A-nor-androgens: incomplete but effective versions of testosterone
We have previously written about Manfred Wolff and Galal Zanati, two pharmacologists from the University of California at San Francisco, who published in the early 1970s about eccentric anabolic steroids that you would think could not work but are still bioactive. In the electrical library we found a 1969 publication by Wolff and Zanati about an anabolic compound that looks so little like testosterone that you can no longer call it a 'steroid'.
In their article, which appeared in the Journal of Medicinal Medicine, Wolff and Zanati describe 2-thia-A-nor-5-alpha-androstan. The prefixes '2-thia' and 'A-nor' indicate the most typical of this compound. You could describe it as a testosterone molecule whose A-ring is cut off and replaced by a sulfur atom.
The researchers made three analogues of the molecule: a bare version, an acetate and a propionate. In an animal study, they tested those compounds with the Hershberger assay. More about this compound you can read here.
"The free alcohol 12 and the propionate 14 are of comparable activity, whereas the acetate 13 is significantly more active", write Wolff and Zanati. "All parameters measured show increases. On the basis of dose-response data on similar tests on testosterone, the potency of 13 is on the order of testosterone."
The figure below is simplified. Click on it for the complete version.
J Med Chem. 1969;12(4):629-31.
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