Synthesis and biological evaluation of novel 2,4-diaminoquinazoline derivatives as SMN2 promoter activators for the potential treatment of spinal muscular atrophy

deCODE Chemistry Inc, Woodridge, IL 60517, USA.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry (Impact Factor: 5.48). 03/2008; 51(3):449-69. DOI: 10.1021/jm061475p
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Proximal spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by death of motor neurons in the spinal cord that is caused by deletion and/or mutation of the survival motor neuron gene ( SMN1). Adjacent to SMN1 are a variable number of copies of the SMN2 gene. The two genes essentially differ by a single nucleotide, which causes the majority of the RNA transcripts from SMN2 to lack exon 7. Although both SMN1 and SMN2 encode the same Smn protein amino acid sequence, the loss of SMN1 and incorrect splicing of SMN2 have the consequence that Smn protein levels are insufficient for the survival of motor neurons. The therapeutic goal of our medicinal chemistry effort was to identify small-molecule activators of the SMN2 promoter that, by up-regulating gene transcription, would produce greater quantities of full-length Smn protein. Our initial medicinal chemistry effort explored a series of C5 substituted benzyl ether based 2,4-diaminoquinazoline derivatives that were found to be potent activators of the SMN2 promoter; however, inhibition of DHFR was shown to be an off-target activity that was linked to ATP depletion. We used a structure-guided approach to overcome DHFR inhibition while retaining SMN2 promoter activation. A lead compound 11a was identified as having high potency (EC50 = 4 nM) and 2.3-fold induction of the SMN2 promoter. Compound 11a possessed desirable pharmaceutical properties, including excellent brain exposure and long brain half-life following oral dosing to mice. The piperidine compound 11a up-regulated expression of the mouse SMN gene in NSC-34 cells, a mouse motor neuron hybrid cell line. In type 1 SMA patient fibroblasts, compound 11a induced Smn in a dose-dependent manner when analyzed by immunoblotting and increased the number of intranuclear particles called gems. The compound restored gems numbers in type I SMA patient fibroblasts to levels near unaffected genetic carriers of SMA.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This work describes the first rational targeting of tyrosine residues in a protein binding site by small molecule covalent probes. Specific tyrosine residues in the active site of the mRNA decapping scavenger enzyme DcpS were modified using reactive sulfonyl fluoride covalent inhibitors. Structure-based molecular design was used to create an alkyne-tagged probe bearing the sulfonyl fluoride warhead, so enabling efficient capture of the protein from a complex proteome. Using the probe in competition experiments with a diaminoquinazoline DcpS inhibitor permitted the quantification of intracellular target occupancy. As a result, diaminoquinazoline upregulators of survival motor neuron protein for the treatment of spinal muscular atrophy were confirmed inhibitors of DcpS in human primary cells. This work illustrates the utility of sulfonyl fluoride probes designed to react with specific protein tyrosine residues and augments the chemical biology toolkit for uses in target validation and molecular pharmacology.
    ACS Chemical Biology 01/2015; DOI:10.1021/cb5009475 · 5.36 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a leading genetic cause of infant death worldwide, is an autosomal recessive disorder caused by the loss of SMN1 (survival motor neuron 1), which encodes the protein SMN. The loss of SMN1 causes a deficiency in SMN protein levels leading to motor neuron cell death in the anterior horn of the spinal cord. SMN2, however, can also produce some functional SMN to partially compensate for loss of SMN1 in SMA suggesting increasing transcription of SMN2 as a potential therapy to treat patients with SMA. A cAMP response element was identified on the SMN2 promoter, implicating cAMP activation as a step in the transcription of SMN2. Therefore, we investigated the effects of modulating the cAMP signaling cascade on SMN production in vitro and in silico. SMA patient fibroblasts were treated with the cAMP signaling modulators rolipram, salbutamol, dbcAMP, epinephrine and forskolin. All of the modulators tested were able to increase gem formation, a marker for SMN protein in the nucleus, in a dose-dependent manner. We then derived two possible mathematical models simulating the regulation of SMN2 expression by cAMP signaling. Both models fit well with our experimental data. In silico treatment of SMA fibroblasts simultaneously with two different cAMP modulators resulted in an additive increase in gem formation. This study shows how a systems biology approach can be used to develop potential therapeutic targets for treating SMA.
    PLoS ONE 12/2014; 9(12):e115473. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0115473 · 3.53 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Abstract Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive genetic disorder resulting in degeneration of α-motor neurons of the anterior horn and proximal muscle weakness. It is the leading cause of genetic mortality in children younger than 2 years. It affects ∼1 in 11,000 live births. In 95% of cases, SMA is caused by homozygous deletion of the SMN1 gene. In addition, all patients possess at least one copy of an almost identical gene called SMN2. A single point mutation in exon 7 of the SMN2 gene results in the production of low levels of full-length survival of motor neuron (SMN) protein at amounts insufficient to compensate for the loss of the SMN1 gene. Although no drug treatments are available for SMA, a number of drug discovery and development programs are ongoing, with several currently in clinical trials. This review describes the assays used to identify candidate drugs for SMA that modulate SMN2 gene expression by various means. Specifically, it discusses the use of high-throughput screening to identify candidate molecules from primary screens, as well as the technical aspects of a number of widely used secondary assays to assess SMN messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) and protein expression, localization, and function. Finally, it describes the process of iterative drug optimization utilized during preclinical SMA drug development to identify clinical candidates for testing in human clinical trials.
    Assay and Drug Development Technologies 08/2014; 12(6):315-41. DOI:10.1089/adt.2014.587 · 2.08 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

Available from
May 20, 2014