PURPOSEAntagonists to A3 adenosine receptors (ARs) lower mouse intraocular pressure (IOP), but extension to humans is limited by species variability. We tested whether the specific A3AR antagonist MRS 1292, designed to cross species, mimicks the effects of other A3AR antagonists on cultured human nonpigmented ciliary epithelial (NPE) cells and mouse IOP.METHODSNPE cell volume was monitored by electronic cell sorting. Mouse IOP was measured with the Servo-Null Micropipette System.RESULTSAdenosine triggered A3AR-mediated shrinkage of human NPE cells. Shrinkage was blocked by MRS 1292 (IC50 = 42 +/- 11 nM, p < 0.01) and by another A3AR antagonist effective in this system, MRS 1191. Topical application of the A3AR agonist IB-MECA increased mouse IOP. MRS 1292 reduced IOP by 4.0 +/- 0.8 mmHg at 25-microM droplet concentration (n = 10, p < 0.005).CONCLUSIONSMRS 1292 inhibits A3AR-mediated shrinkage of human NPE cells and reduces mouse IOP, consistent with its putative action as a cross-species A3 antagonist.