During the 1970s and 1980s, researchers at McNeil Laboratories synthesized fenobam from creatine and developed it as an anxiolytic drug. Its molecular target was unknown at the time, but in 2005 fenobam was discovered to be a potent, selective mGluR5 antagonist. This finding prompted structure–activity relationship studies with fenobam as the lead compound. Among other potential uses, it may lead to a treatment for autism.
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