Inhibitors of 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11β-HSD1) show promise as drugs to treat metabolic disease and CNS disorders such as cognitive impairment. A series of 1,5-substituted 1H-tetrazole 11β-HSD1 inhibitors has been discovered and chemically modified. Compounds are selective for 11β-HSD1 over 11β-HSD2 and possess good cellular potency in human and murine 11β-HSD1 assays. A range of in vitro stabilities are observed in human liver microsome assays. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.