Cloning and functional characterization through antisense mapping of a κ3-related opioid receptor

Ying Xian Pan, Jie Cheng, Jin Xu, Grace Rossi, Elissa Jacobson, Jennifer Ryan-Moro, Andrew I. Brooks, Gary E. Dean, Kelly M. Standifer, Gavril W. Pasternak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

152 Scopus citations


We have identified a putative opioid receptor from mouse brain (KOR-3), belonging to the G protein-coupled receptor family, that is distinct from the previously cloned μ, δ, and κ1 receptors. Assignment of the clone to the opioid receptor family derives from both structural and functional studies. Its predicted amino acid sequence is highly homologous to that of the other opioid receptors, particularly in many of the transmembrane regions, where long stretches are identical to μ, δ, and κ1 receptors. Both cyclazocine and nalorphine inhibit CAMP accumulation in COS-7 cells stably expressing the clone. Northern analysis shows that the mRNA is present in brain but not in a number of other organs. Southern analysis suggests a single gene encoding the receptor. A highly selective monoclonal antibody directed against the native κ3 receptor recognizes, in Western analysis, the clone expressed in COS-7 cells. The in vitro translation product is also labeled by the antibody. Additional clones reveal the presence of several introns, including one in the second extracellular loop and another in the first transmembrane region. Antisense studies with an oligodeoxynucleotide directed against a region of the second extracellular loop reveal a selective blockade of κ3 analgesia in vivo that is not observed with a mismatch oligodeoxynucleotide based upon the antisense sequence. The μ, δ, and κ1 analgesia is unaffected by this antisense treatment. Antisense mapping of the clone downstream from the splice site in the first transmembrane region reveals that six different antisense oligodeoxynucleotides all block κ3 analgesia. In contrast, only one of an additional six different antisense oligodeoxynucleotides directed at regions upstream from this splice site is effective. This strong demarcation between the two regions raises the possibility of splice variants of the receptor. An additional clone reveals an insert in the 3' untranslated region. In conclusion, the antibody and antisense studies strongly associate KOR-3 with the κ3-opioid receptor, although it is not clear whether it is the κ3 receptor itself or a splice variant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1180-1188
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular pharmacology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1995
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology


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