Alpha-7 nicotinic receptor
The alpha-7 nicotinic receptor, also known as the α7 receptor, is a type of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, consisting entirely of α7 subunits. As with other nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, functional α7 receptors are pentameric [i.e., (α7)5 stoichiometry].
An α7 nicotinic agonist appears to have positive effects on neurocognition in persons with schizophrenia.
- (+)-N-(1-azabicyclo[2.2.2]oct-3-yl)benzo[b]furan- 2-carboxamide: potent and highly subtype-selective
- A-582941: partial agonist; activates ERK1/2 and CREB phosphorylation; enhances cognitive performance
- AR-R17779: full agonist, nootropic
- Amyloid beta: neurotoxic marker of Alzheimer's disease 
- TC-1698: subtype-selective; neuroprotective effects via activation of the JAK2/PI-3K cascade, neutralized by angiotensin II AT(2) receptor activation
- TC-5619 - partial agonist, in development for treatment of schizophrenia
- GTS-21 - partial agonist, in development for treatment of schizophrenia and/or Alzheimer's disease
- PHA-543,613 - selective and potent agonist with nootropic properties
- PNU-282,987 - selective and potent agonist, but may cause long QT syndrome
- PHA-709829: potent and subtype-selective; robust in vivo efficacy in a rat auditory sensory gating model
- SSR-180,711: partial agonist
- Tropisetron: subtype-selective partial agonist; 5-HT3 receptor antagonist
- WAY-317,538 - selective potent full agonist with nootropic and neuroprotective properties
Positive Allosteric Modulators (PAMs)
At least two types of positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) can be distinguished.
- NS-1738: marginal effects on α7 desensitization kinetics; modestly brain-penetrant
- AVL-3288: unlike the above PAMs, AVL-3288 does not affect α7 desensitization kinetics, and is readily brain penetrant. Improves cognitive behavior in animal models In clinical development for cognitive deficits in schizophrenia.
- α-conotoxin ArIB[V11L,V16D]: potent and highly subtype-selective; slowly reversible
- Quinolizidine (–)-1-epi-207I: α7 subtype preferring blocker