An expanding range of targets for kynurenine metabolites of tryptophan

Stone, T. W. , Stoy, N. and Darlington, L. G. (2013) An expanding range of targets for kynurenine metabolites of tryptophan. Trends in Pharmacological Sciences, 34(2), pp. 136-143. (doi: 10.1016/

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The kynurenine pathway of tryptophan metabolism accounts for most of the tryptophan that is not committed to protein synthesis and includes compounds active in the nervous and immune systems. Kynurenine acts on the aryl hydrocarbon receptor, affecting the metabolism of xenobiotics and promoting carcinogenesis. Quinolinic acid is an agonist at N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs), but is also pro-oxidant, has immunomodulatory actions, and promotes the formation of hyperphosphorylated tau proteins. Kynurenic acid blocks NMDARs and α7-homomeric nicotinic cholinoceptors and is also an agonist at the orphan G-protein-coupled receptor GPR35. 3-Hydroxykynurenine and 3-hydroxyanthranilic acid have pronounced redox activity and regulate T cell function. Cinnabarinic acid can activate metabotropic glutamate receptors. This review highlights the increasing range of molecular targets for components of the kynurenine pathway in both the nervous and immune systems in relation to their relevance to disease and drug development.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Stone, Professor Trevor
Authors: Stone, T. W., Stoy, N., and Darlington, L. G.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Psychology & Neuroscience
Journal Name:Trends in Pharmacological Sciences
ISSN (Online):1873-3735
Published Online:31 October 2012
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2013 Elsevier
First Published:First published in Trends in Pharmacological Sciences 34(2):136-143
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.

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