[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) allow the tuning of pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties by active or passive targeting of drugs for cancer and other diseases. We have functionalized gold nanoparticles by tethering specific ligands, agonists and antagonists, of adenosine receptors (ARs) to the gold surface as models for cell surface interactions with G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). The AuNP conjugates with chain-extended AR ligands alone (PEGylated nucleosides and nonnucleosides, anchored to the Au via thioctic acid) were found to be insoluble in water due to hydrophobic entities in the ligand. Therefore, we added a second, biologically inactive pendant moiety to increase the water solubility, consisting of a PEGylated chain terminating in a carboxylic or phosphate group. The purity and stability of the immobilized biologically active ligand were examined by ultrafiltration and HPLC. Pharmacological receptor binding studies on these GPCR ligand-derivatized AuNPs (2-5 nm in diameter), performed using membranes of mammalian cells stably expressing human A(1), A(2A), and A(3)ARs, showed that the desired selectivity was retained with K (i) values (nanomolar) of A(3)AR agonist 21b and A(2A)AR antagonists 24 and 26a of 14 (A(3)), 34 (A(2A)), and 69 (A(2A)), respectively. The corresponding monomers displayed K (i) values of 37, 61, and 1,420 nM, respectively. In conclusion, we have synthesized stable, water-soluble AuNP derivatives of tethered A(3) and A(2A)AR ligands that retain the biological properties of their monomeric ligands and are intended for therapeutic and imaging applications. This is the first prototypical application to gold carriers of small molecule (nonpeptide) GPCR ligands, which are under investigation for treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The structure-activity relationship (SAR) for a novel class of 1,2,4-triazole antagonists of the human A(2A) adenosine receptor (hA(2A)AR) was explored. Thirty-three analogs of a ligand that was discovered in a structure-based virtual screen against the hA(2A)AR were tested in hA(1), A(2A), and A(3) radioligand binding assays and in functional assays for the A(2B)AR subtype. As a series of closely related analogs of the initial lead, 1, did not display improved binding affinity or selectivity, molecular docking was used to guide the selection of more distantly related molecules. This resulted in the discovery of 32, a hA(2A)AR antagonist (K(i) 200 nM) with high ligand efficiency. In the light of the SAR for the 1,2,4-triazole scaffold, we also investigated the binding mode of these compounds based on docking to several A(2A)AR crystal structures.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A(1) adenosine receptor (AR) agonists display antiischemic and antiepileptic neuroprotective activity, but peripheral cardiovascular side effects impeded their development. SAR study of N(6)-cycloalkylmethyl 4'-truncated (N)-methanocarba-adenosines identified 10 (MRS5474, N(6)-dicyclopropylmethyl, K(i) = 47.9 nM) as a moderately A(1)AR-selective full agonist. Two stereochemically defined N(6)-methynyl group substituents displayed narrow SAR; groups larger than cyclobutyl greatly reduced AR affinity, and those larger or smaller than cyclopropyl reduced A(1)AR selectivity. Nucleoside docking to A(1)AR homology model characterized distinct hydrophobic cyclopropyl subpockets, the larger "A" forming contacts with Thr270 (7.35), Tyr271 (7.36), Ile274 (7.39), and carbon chains of glutamates (EL2) and the smaller subpocket "B" forming contacts between TM6 and TM7. 10 suppressed minimal clonic seizures (6 Hz mouse model) without typical rotarod impairment of A(1)AR agonists. Truncated nucleosides, an appealing preclinical approach, have more druglike physicochemical properties than other A(1)AR agonists. Thus, we identified highly restricted regions for substitution around N(6) suitable for an A(1)AR agonist with anticonvulsant activity.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 08/2012; 55(18):8075-90. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: C2-Arylethynyladenosine-5'-N-methyluronamides containing a bicyclo[3.1.0]hexane ((N)-methanocarba) ring are selective A(3) adenosine receptor (AR) agonists. Similar 4'-truncated C2-arylethynyl-(N)-methanocarba nucleosides containing alkyl or alkylaryl groups at the N(6) position were low-efficacy agonists or antagonists of the human A(3)AR with high selectivity. Higher hA(3)AR affinity was associated with N(6)-methyl and ethyl (K(i) 3-6 nM), than with N(6)-arylalkyl groups. However, combined C2-phenylethynyl and N(6)-2-phenylethyl substitutions in selective antagonist 15 provided a K(i) of 20 nM. Differences between 4'-truncated and nontruncated analogues of extended C2-p-biphenylethynyl substitution suggested a ligand reorientation in AR binding, dominated by bulky N(6) groups in analogues lacking a stabilizing 5'-uronamide moiety. Thus, 4'-truncation of C2-arylethynyl-(N)-methanocarba adenosine derivatives is compatible with general preservation of A(3)AR selectivity, especially with small N(6) groups, but reduced efficacy in A(3)AR-induced inhibition of adenylate cyclase.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: (N)-Methanocarba adenosine 5'-methyluronamides containing known A(3) AR (adenosine receptor)-enhancing modifications, i.e., 2-(arylethynyl)adenine and N(6)-methyl or N(6)-(3-substituted-benzyl), were nanomolar full agonists of human (h) A(3)AR and highly selective (K(i) ∼0.6 nM, N(6)-methyl 2-(halophenylethynyl) analogues 13 and 14). Combined 2-arylethynyl-N(6)-3-chlorobenzyl substitutions preserved A(3)AR affinity/selectivity in the (N)-methanocarba series (e.g., 3,4-difluoro full agonist MRS5698 31, K(i) 3 nM, human and mouse A(3)) better than that for ribosides. Polyaromatic 2-ethynyl N(6)-3-chlorobenzyl analogues, such as potent linearly extended 2-p-biphenylethynyl MRS5679 34 (K(i) hA(3) 3.1 nM; A(1), A(2A), inactive) and fluorescent 1-pyrene adduct MRS5704 35 (K(i) hA(3) 68.3 nM), were conformationally rigid; receptor docking identified a large, mainly hydrophobic binding region. The vicinity of receptor-bound C2 groups was probed by homology modeling based on recent X-ray structure of an agonist-bound A(2A)AR, with a predicted helical rearrangement requiring an agonist-specific outward displacement of TM2 resembling opsin. Thus, the X-ray structure of related A(2A)AR is useful in guiding the design of new A(3)AR agonists.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 05/2012; 55(10):4847-60. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Structures of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) have a proven utility in the discovery of new antagonists and inverse agonists modulating signaling of this important family of clinical targets. Applicability of active-state GPCR structures to virtual screening and rational optimization of agonists, however, remains to be assessed. In this study of adenosine 5' derivatives, we evaluated the performance of an agonist-bound A(2A) adenosine receptor (AR) structure in retrieval of known agonists and then employed the structure to screen for new fragments optimally fitting the corresponding subpocket. Biochemical and functional assays demonstrate high affinity of new derivatives that include polar heterocycles. The binding models also explain modest selectivity gain for some substituents toward the closely related A(1)AR subtype and the modified agonist efficacy of some of these ligands. The study suggests further applicability of in silico fragment screening to rational lead optimization in GPCRs.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 04/2012; 55(9):4297-308. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The physiological role of the A(3) adenosine receptor (AR) was explored in cardiac ischaemia, inflammatory diseases and cancer. We report a new fluorophore-conjugated human (h) A(3)AR antagonist for application to cell-based assays in ligand discovery and for receptor imaging. Fluorescent pyrazolo[4,3-e][1,2,4]triazolo[1,5-c]pyrimidin-5-ylamine (pyrazolo-triazolo-pyrimidine, PTP) and triazolo[1,5-c]quinazolin-5-yl)amine (triazolo-quinazoline, TQ) AR antagonists were compared. A chain-extended and click-conjugated Alexa Fluor-488 TQ derivative (MRS5449) displayed a radioligand binding K(i) value of 6.4±2.5nM in hA(3)AR-expressing CHO cell membranes. MRS5449 antagonized hA(3)AR agonist-induced inhibition of cyclic AMP accumulation in a concentration-dependent manner (K(B)=4.8nM). Using flow cytometry (FCM), MRS5449 saturated hA(3)ARs with very high specific-to-nonspecific binding ratio with an equilibrium binding constant 5.15nM, comparable to the K(d) value of 6.65nM calculated from kinetic experiments. K(i) values of known AR antagonists in inhibition of MRS5449 binding in whole cell FCM were consistent with radioligand binding in membranes, but agonist binding was 5-20 fold weaker than obtained with agonist radioligand [(125)I]I-AB-MECA. Further binding analysis of MRS5549 suggested multiple agonist binding states of the A(3)AR. Molecular docking predicted binding modes of these fluorescent antagonists. Thus, MRS5449 is a useful tool for hA(3)AR characterization.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are attractive targets for pharmaceutical research. With the recent determination of several GPCR X-ray structures, the applicability of structure-based computational methods for ligand identification, such as docking, has increased. Yet, as only about 1% of GPCRs have a known structure, receptor homology modeling remains necessary. In order to investigate the usability of homology models and the inherent selectivity of a particular model in relation to close homologs, we constructed multiple homology models for the A(1) adenosine receptor (A(1)AR) and docked ∼2.2 M lead-like compounds. High-ranking molecules were tested on the A(1)AR as well as the close homologs A(2A)AR and A(3)AR. While the screen yielded numerous potent and novel ligands (hit rate 21% and highest affinity of 400 nM), it delivered few selective compounds. Moreover, most compounds appeared in the top ranks of only one model. These findings have implications for future screens.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(11):e49910. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adenosine derivatives were modified with alkynyl groups on N(6) substituents for linkage to carriers using Cu(I)-catalyzed click chemistry. Two parallel series, both containing a rigid North-methanocarba (bicyclo[3.1.0]hexane) ring system in place of ribose, behaved as A(3) adenosine receptor (AR) agonists: (5'-methyluronamides) or partial agonists (4'-truncated). Terminal alkynyl groups on a chain at the 3 position of a N(6)-benzyl group or simply through a N(6)-propargyl group were coupled to azido derivatives, which included both small molecules and G4 (fourth-generation) multivalent poly(amidoamine) (PAMAM) dendrimers, to form 1,2,3-triazolyl linkers. The small molecular triazoles probed the tolerance in A(3)AR binding of distal, sterically bulky groups such as 1-adamantyl. Terminal 4-fluoro-3-nitrophenyl groups anticipated nucleophilic substitution for chain extension and (18)F radiolabeling. N(6)-(4-Fluoro-3-nitrophenyl)-triazolylmethyl derivative 32 displayed a K(i) of 9.1 nM at A(3)AR with ∼1000-fold subtype selectivity. Multivalent conjugates additionally containing click-linked water-solubilizing polyethylene glycol groups potently activated A(3)AR in the 5'-methyluronamide, but not 4' truncated series. N(6)-Benzyl nucleoside conjugate 43 (apparent K(i) 24 nM) maintained binding affinity of the monomer better than a N(6)-triazolylmethyl derivative. Thus, the N(6) region of 5'-methyluronamide derivatives, as modeled in receptor docking, is suitable for functionalization and tethering by click chemistry to achieve high A(3)AR agonist affinity and enhanced selectivity.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Truncated N(6)-substituted-4'-oxo- and 4'-thioadenosine derivatives with C2 or C8 substitution were studied as dual acting A(2A) and A(3) adenosine receptor (AR) ligands. The lithiation-mediated stannyl transfer and palladium-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions were utilized for functionalization of the C2 position of 6-chloropurine nucleosides. An unsubstituted 6-amino group and a hydrophobic C2 substituent were required for high affinity at the hA(2A)AR, but hydrophobic C8 substitution abolished binding at the hA(2A)AR. However, most of synthesized compounds displayed medium to high binding affinity at the hA(3)AR, regardless of C2 or C8 substitution, and low efficacy in a functional cAMP assay. Several compounds tended to be full hA(2A)AR agonists. C2 substitution probed geometrically through hA(2A)AR docking was important for binding in order of hexynyl > hexenyl > hexanyl. Compound 4g was the most potent ligand acting dually as hA(2A)AR agonist and hA(3)AR antagonist, which might be useful for treatment of asthma or other inflammatory diseases.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 12/2011; 55(1):342-56. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adenosine released during myocardial ischemia mediates cardioprotective preconditioning. Multivalent drugs covalently bound to nanocarriers may differ greatly in chemical and biological properties from the corresponding monomeric agents. Here, we conjugated chemically functionalized nucleosides to poly(amidoamine) (PAMAM) dendrimeric polymers and investigated their effects in rat primary cardiac cell cultures and in the isolated heart. Three conjugates of A₃ adenosine receptor (AR) agonists, chain-functionalized at the C2 or N⁶ position, were cardioprotective, with greater potency than monomeric agonist Cl-IB-MECA. Multivalent amide-linked MRS5216 was selective for A₁ and A₃ARs, and triazole-linked MRS5246 and MRS5539 (optionally containing fluorescent label) were A₃AR-selective. The conjugates protected ischemic rat cardiomyocytes, an effect blocked by an A₃AR antagonist MRS1523, and isolated hearts with significantly improved infarct size, rate of pressure product, and rate of contraction and relaxation. Thus, strategically derivatized nucleosides tethered to biocompatible polymeric carriers display enhanced cardioprotective potency via activation of A₃AR on the cardiomyocyte surface.
Pharmacological Research 12/2011; 65(3):338-46. · 4.35 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Molecular modeling of agonist binding to the human A(2A) adenosine receptor (AR) was assessed and extended in light of crystallographic structures. Heterocyclic adenine nitrogens of cocrystallized agonist overlaid corresponding positions of the heterocyclic base of a bound triazolotriazine antagonist, and ribose moiety was coordinated in a hydrophilic region, as previously predicted based on modeling using the inactive receptor. Automatic agonist docking of 20 known potent nucleoside agonists to agonist-bound A(2A)AR crystallographic structures predicted new stabilizing protein interactions to provide a structural basis for previous empirical structure activity relationships consistent with previous mutagenesis results. We predicted binding of novel C2 terminal amino acid conjugates of A(2A)AR agonist CGS21680 and used these models to interpret effects on binding affinity of newly synthesized agonists. d-Amino acid conjugates were generally more potent than l-stereoisomers and free terminal carboxylates more potent than corresponding methyl esters. Amino acid moieties were coordinated close to extracellular loops 2 and 3. Thus, molecular modeling is useful in probing ligand recognition and rational design of GPCR-targeting compounds with specific pharmacological profiles.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 11/2011; 55(1):538-52. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The stereoselective synthesis of truncated 3'-aminocarbanucleosides 4a-d via a stereo- and regioselective conversion of a diol 9 to bromoacetate 11a and their binding affinity towards the human A(3) adenosine receptor are described.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A(1) adenosine receptor (AR) agonists are neuroprotective, cardioprotective, and anxiolytic. (N)-Methanocarba adenine nucleosides designed to bind to human A(1)AR were truncated to eliminate 5'-CH(2)OH. This modification previously converted A(3)AR agonists into antagonists, but the comparable effect at A(1)AR is unknown. In comparison to ribosides, affinity at the A(1)AR was less well preserved than at the A(3)AR, although a few derivatives were moderately A(1)AR selective, notably full agonist 21 (N(6)-dicyclopropylmethyl, K(i) 47.9 nM). Thus, at the A(1)AR recognition elements for nucleoside binding depend more on 5'region interactions, and in their absence A(3)AR selectivity predominates. Based on the recently reported agonist-bound AR structure, this difference between subtypes likely correlates with an essential His residue in transmembrane domain 6 of A(1) but not A(3)AR. The derivatives ranged from partial to full agonists in A(1)AR-mediated adenylate cyclase inhibition. Truncated derivatives have more drug-like physical properties than other A(1)AR agonists; this approach is appealing for preclinical development.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pyrazolo[4,3-e][1,2,4]triazolo[1,5-c]pyrimidin-5-amine derivatives such as SCH 442416 display high affinity and selectivity as antagonists for the human A(2A) adenosine receptor (AR). We extended ether-linked chain substituents at the p-position of the phenyl group using optimized O-alkylation. The conjugates included an ester, carboxylic acid and amines (for amide condensation), an alkyne (for click chemistry), a fluoropropyl group (for (18)F incorporation), and fluorophore reporter groups (e.g., BODIPY conjugate 14, K(i) 15 nM). The potent and A(2A)AR-selective N-aminoethylacetamide 7 and N-[2-(2-aminoethyl)-aminoethyl]acetamide 8 congeners were coupled to polyamidoamine (PAMAM) G3.5 dendrimers, and the multivalent conjugates displayed high A(2A)AR affinity. Theoretical docking of an AlexaFluor conjugate to the receptor X-ray structure highlighted the key interactions between the heterocyclic core and the binding pocket of the A(2A)AR as well as the distal anchoring of the fluorophore. In conclusion, we have synthesized a family of high affinity functionalized congeners as pharmacological probes for studying the A(2A)AR.