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CAS Number
PubChem CID
Chemical and physical data
Molar mass352.143 g·mol−1
3D model (JSmol)

Ro4938581 is a nootropic drug invented in 2009 by a team working for Hoffmann-La Roche, which acts as a subtype-selective inverse agonist at the α5 subtype of the benzodiazepine binding site on the GABAA receptor. It has good selectivity for the α5 subtype and did not produce convulsant or anxiogenic effects in animal studies, making it a promising potential nootropic.[1][2][3] Ro4938581 and a related derivative basmisanil (RG-1662, RO5186582) have subsequently been investigated for the alleviation of cognitive dysfunction in Down syndrome.[4][5]

See also


  1. ^ Ballard, T. M.; Knoflach, F. D. R.; Prinssen, E.; Borroni, E.; Vivian, J. A.; Basile, J.; Gasser, R.; Moreau, J. L.; Wettstein, J. G.; Buettelmann, B.; Knust, H.; Thomas, A. W.; Trube, G.; Hernandez, M. C. (2008). "RO4938581, a novel cognitive enhancer acting at GABAA α5 subunit-containing receptors". Psychopharmacology. 202 (1–3): 207–223. doi:10.1007/s00213-008-1357-7. PMID 18936916.
  2. ^ Knust, H.; Achermann, G.; Ballard, T.; Buettelmann, B.; Gasser, R.; Fischer, H.; Hernandez, M. C.; Knoflach, F. D. R.; Koblet, A.; Stadler, H.; Thomas, A. W.; Trube, G.; Waldmeier, P. (2009). "The discovery and unique pharmacological profile of RO4938581 and RO4882224 as potent and selective GABAA α5 inverse agonists for the treatment of cognitive dysfunction". Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters. 19 (20): 5940–5944. doi:10.1016/j.bmcl.2009.08.053. PMID 19762240.
  3. ^ Redrobe, J. P.; Elster, L.; Frederiksen, K.; Bundgaard, C.; De Jong, I. E. M.; Smith, G. P.; Bruun, A. T.; Larsen, P. H.; Didriksen, M. (2011). "Negative modulation of GABAA α5 receptors by RO4938581 attenuates discrete sub-chronic and early postnatal phencyclidine (PCP)-induced cognitive deficits in rats". Psychopharmacology. 221 (3): 451–468. doi:10.1007/s00213-011-2593-9. PMID 22124672.
  4. ^ Martinez-Cue, C.; Martínez, P.; Rueda, N.; Vidal, R.; García, S.; Vidal, V.; Corrales, A.; Montero, J. A.; Pazos, A.; Flórez, J.; Gasser, R.; Thomas, A. W.; Honer, M.; Knoflach, F.; Trejo, J. L.; Wettstein, J. G.; Hernández, M. -C. (2013). "Reducing GABAA 5 Receptor-Mediated Inhibition Rescues Functional and Neuromorphological Deficits in a Mouse Model of Down Syndrome". Journal of Neuroscience. 33 (9): 3953–3966. doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1203-12.2013. PMID 23447605.
  5. ^ Inhibiting Inhibition to Treat Down Syndrome Symptoms