Project Team: Jakob Magolan (PI), Xiong Zhang, Jagdish Patel

Depression is a common psychiatric disorder. According to the most prevalent monoamine theory, depression is caused by an imbalance of brain neurotransmitters: serotonin, noradrenaline, and dopamine. All currently available antidepressant drugs act mainly by increasing the concentration of these in the brain. Primary drawbacks of current antidepressant drugs are undesirable side effects and late onset of action. Additionally, these drugs are characterized by relatively low efficacy. There is no ideal medication on the market and new antidepressant drugs are needed. Therefore, our goal is to identify new compounds based on a natural product scaffold with increased affinity for 5-HT2B receptor using molecular modeling and synthesize them in the lab to measure their experimental affinities.