Exploring HCN channels as novel drug targets

Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, 2011, doi:10.1038/nrd3576, published on 18.11.2011
Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, online article
Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels have a key role in the control of heart rate and neuronal excitability. Ivabradine is the first compound acting on HCN channels to be clinically approved for the treatment of angina pectoris. HCN channels may offer excellent opportunities for the development of novel anticonvulsant, anaesthetic and analgesic drugs. In support of this idea, some well-established drugs that act on the central nervous system — including lamotrigine, gabapentin and propofol — have been found to modulate HCN channel function. This Review gives an up-to-date summary of compounds acting on HCN channels, and discusses strategies to further explore the potential of these channels for therapeutic intervention.

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