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ABSTRACT: A novel strategy that targets protein for degradation has recently been developed by exploiting a protein-targeting chimeric molecule ('Protac'). Typically, the chimeric Protac is composed of a small-molecule ligand ('bait') on one end and a synthetic octapeptide on the other. This octapeptide is recognized by E3 ubiquitin ligase pVHL (von Hippel Lindau tumor suppressor protein), thereby recruiting a small molecule-bound protein ('prey') to pVHL for ubiquitination and degradation. Since selective degradation of a cellular protein generates a "loss of function" mutation, this protein knock-out strategy may be useful to study the function of a given protein or to evaluate whether a cellular protein is a potential target for drug intervention, in a manner reminiscent of gene knock-out or siRNA approaches. Herein, we show that a synthetic pentapeptide is sufficient to interact with pVHL E3 ligase, and that the pentapeptide-based Protac efficiently induces ubiquitination and degradation of target protein. Our results also demonstrate that the pentapeptide-based Protac can enter cells efficiently to exerts its biological activity effectively. These results suggest that the synthetic pentapeptide can be used either directly in the preparation of cell-permeable Protacs or as a template to develop peptidomimetic or non-peptide Protacs.
Combinatorial Chemistry & High Throughput Screening 12/2004; 7(7):689-97. · 1.93 Impact Factor