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G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) represent the largest class of current drug targets. In particular, small-molecule allosteric modulators offer substantial potential for selectively "tuning" GPCR activity. However, there remains a critical need for experimental strategies that unambiguously determine direct allosteric ligand-GPCR interactions, to facilitate both chemical biology studies and rational structure-based drug design. We now report the development and use of first-in-class clickable allosteric photoprobes for a GPCR based on metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGlu5) negative allosteric modulator (NAM) chemotypes. Select acetylenic mGlu5 NAM lead compounds were rationally modified to contain either a benzophenone or an aryl azide as a photoreactive functional group, enabling irreversible covalent attachment to mGlu5 via photoactivation. Additionally, a terminal alkyne or an aliphatic azide was incorporated as a click chemistry handle, allowing chemoselective attachment of fluorescent moieties to the irreversibly mGlu5-bound probe via tandem photoaffinity labeling-bioorthogonal conjugation. These clickable photoprobes retained submicromolar affinity for mGlu5 and negative cooperativity with glutamate, interacted with the "common allosteric-binding site," displayed slow binding kinetics, and could irreversibly label mGlu5 following UV exposure. We depleted the number of functional mGlu5 receptors using an irreversibly bound NAM to elucidate and delineate orthosteric agonist affinity and efficacy. Finally, successful conjugation of fluorescent dyes via click chemistry was demonstrated for each photoprobe. In the future, these clickable photoprobes are expected to aid our understanding of the structural basis of mGlu5 allosteric modulation. Furthermore, tandem photoaffinity labeling-bioorthogonal conjugation is expected to be a broadly applicable experimental strategy across the entire GPCR superfamily.
Positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) of metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGlu5) represent a promising therapeutic strategy for the treatment of schizophrenia. Both allosteric agonism and high glutamate fold-shift have been implicated in the neurotoxic profile of some mGlu5 PAMs; however, these hypotheses remain to be adequately addressed. To develop tool compounds to probe these hypotheses, the structure-activity relationship of allosteric agonism was examined within an acetylenic series of mGlu5 PAMs exhibiting allosteric agonism in addition to positive allosteric modulation (ago-PAMs). PAM 38t, a low glutamate fold-shift allosteric ligand (maximum fold-shift ~ 3.0), was selected as a potent PAM with no agonism in the in vitro system used for compound characterization and in two native electrophysiological systems using rat hippocampal slices. PAM 38t (ML254) will be useful to probe the relative contribution of cooperativity and allosteric agonism to the adverse effect liability and neurotoxicity associated with this class of mGlu5 PAMs.
We report the synthesis of four series of 3,5-disubstituted-phenyl ligands targeting the metabotropic glutamate receptor subtype 5: (2-methylthiazol-4-yl)ethynyl (1a-j,), (6-methylpyridin-2-yl)ethynyl (2a-j), (5-methylpyridin-2-yl)ethynyl (3a-j,), and (pyridin-2-yl)ethynyl (4a-j,). The compounds were evaluated for antagonism of glutamate-mediated mobilization of internal calcium in an mGluR5 in vitro assay. All compounds were found to be full antagonists and exhibited low nanomolar to subnanomolar activity.
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
All of the selective COX-2 inhibitors described to date inhibit the isoform by binding tightly but noncovalently at the substrate binding site. Recently, we reported the first account of selective covalent modification of COX-2 by a novel inactivator, 2-acetoxyphenyl hept-2-ynyl sulfide (70) (Science 1998, 280, 1268-1270). Compound 70 selectively inactivates COX-2 by acetylating the same serine residue that aspirin acetylates. This paper describes the extensive structure-activity relationship (SAR) studies on the initial lead compound 2-acetoxyphenyl methyl sulfide (36) that led to the discovery of 70. Extension of the S-alkyl chain in 36 with higher alkyl homologues led to significant increases in inhibitory potency. The heptyl chain in 2-acetoxyphenyl heptyl sulfide (46) was optimum for COX-2 inhibitory potency, and introduction of a triple bond in the heptyl chain (compound 70) led to further increments in potency and selectivity. The alkynyl analogues were more potent and selective COX-2 inhibitors than the corresponding alkyl homologues. Sulfides were more potent and selective COX-2 inhibitors than the corresponding sulfoxides or sulfones or other heteroatom-containing compounds. In addition to inhibiting purified COX-2, 36, 46, and 70 also inhibited COX-2 activity in murine macrophages. Analogue 36 which displayed moderate potency and selectivity against purified human COX-2 was a potent inhibitor of COX-2 activity in the mouse macrophages. Tryptic digestion and peptide mapping of COX-2 reacted with [1-14C-acetyl]-36 indicated that selective COX-2 inhibition by 36 also resulted in the acetylation of Ser516. That COX-2 inhibition by aspirin resulted from the acetylation of Ser516 was confirmed by tryptic digestion and peptide mapping of COX-2 labeled with [1-14C-acetyl]salicyclic acid. The efficacy of the sulfides in inhibiting COX-2 activity in inflammatory cells, our recent results on the selectivity of 70 in attenuating growth of COX-2-expressing colon cancer cells, and its selectivity for inhibition of COX-2 over COX-1 in vivo indicate that this novel class of covalent modifiers may serve as potential therapeutic agents in inflammatory and proliferative disorders.
Many of aspirin's therapeutic effects arise from its acetylation of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), whereas its antithrombotic and ulcerogenic effects result from its acetylation of COX-1. Here, aspirin-like molecules were designed that preferentially acetylate and irreversibly inactivate COX-2. The most potent of these compounds was o-(acetoxyphenyl)hept-2-ynyl sulfide (APHS). Relative to aspirin, APHS was 60 times as reactive against COX-2 and 100 times as selective for its inhibition; it also inhibited COX-2 in cultured macrophages and colon cancer cells and in the rat air pouch in vivo. Such compounds may lead to the development of aspirin-like drugs for the treatment or prevention of immunological and proliferative diseases without gastrointestinal or hematologic side effects.
Cytochrome P-450 (P-450) enzymes catalyze the oxidation of a wide variety of substrates. Although a large number of P-450s have been characterized in different species and tissues, the mechanisms of catalysis of oxygenation may be understood in terms of a few basic principles. The chemistry is dominated by the ability of a high-valent formal (FeO)3+ species to carry out one-electron oxidations through the abstraction of hydrogen atoms, abstraction of electrons in n or pi orbitals, or the addition to pi bonds. A series of radical recombination reactions then completes the oxidation process. The protein structures are postulated to provide the axial thiolate ligand to the heme, to control the juxtaposition of the substrate (and therefore the regio- and stereoselectivity of oxidation), to alter the effective oxidation potential of the (FeO)3+ complex, and possibly to participate in specific acid/base catalysis in the oxidation of some substrates.