Sample records for model small molecule

  1. Computational Analysis and Predictive Cheminformatics Modeling of Small Molecule Inhibitors of Epigenetic Modifiers. (United States)

    Jamal, Salma; Arora, Sonam; Scaria, Vinod


    The dynamic and differential regulation and expression of genes is majorly governed by the complex interactions of a subset of biomolecules in the cell operating at multiple levels starting from genome organisation to protein post-translational regulation. The regulatory layer contributed by the epigenetic layer has been one of the favourite areas of interest recently. This layer of regulation as we know today largely comprises of DNA modifications, histone modifications and noncoding RNA regulation and the interplay between each of these major components. Epigenetic regulation has been recently shown to be central to development of a number of disease processes. The availability of datasets of high-throughput screens for molecules for biological properties offer a new opportunity to develop computational methodologies which would enable in-silico screening of large molecular libraries. In the present study, we have used data from high throughput screens for the inhibitors of epigenetic modifiers. Computational predictive models were constructed based on the molecular descriptors. Machine learning algorithms for supervised training, Naive Bayes and Random Forest, were used to generate predictive models for the small molecule inhibitors of histone methyl-transferases and demethylases. Random forest, with the accuracy of 80%, was identified as the most accurate classifier. Further we complemented the study with substructure search approach filtering out the probable pharmacophores from the active molecules leading to drug molecules. We show that effective use of appropriate computational algorithms could be used to learn molecular and structural correlates of biological activities of small molecules. The computational models developed could be potentially used to screen and identify potential new biological activities of molecules from large molecular libraries and prioritise them for in-depth biological assays. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first and

  2. Using RosettaLigand for small molecule docking into comparative models.

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    Kristian W Kaufmann

    Full Text Available Computational small molecule docking into comparative models of proteins is widely used to query protein function and in the development of small molecule therapeutics. We benchmark RosettaLigand docking into comparative models for nine proteins built during CASP8 that contain ligands. We supplement the study with 21 additional protein/ligand complexes to cover a wider space of chemotypes. During a full docking run in 21 of the 30 cases, RosettaLigand successfully found a native-like binding mode among the top ten scoring binding modes. From the benchmark cases we find that careful template selection based on ligand occupancy provides the best chance of success while overall sequence identity between template and target do not appear to improve results. We also find that binding energy normalized by atom number is often less than -0.4 in native-like binding modes.

  3. Recent advances in small organic molecules as DNA intercalating agents: synthesis, activity, and modeling. (United States)

    Rescifina, Antonio; Zagni, Chiara; Varrica, Maria Giulia; Pistarà, Venerando; Corsaro, Antonino


    The interaction of small molecules with DNA plays an essential role in many biological processes. As DNA is often the target for majority of anticancer and antibiotic drugs, study about the interaction of drug and DNA has a key role in pharmacology. Moreover, understanding the interactions of small molecules with DNA is of prime significance in the rational design of more powerful and selective anticancer agents. Two of the most important and promising targets in cancer chemotherapy include DNA alkylating agents and DNA intercalators. For these last the DNA recognition is a critical step in their anti-tumor action and the intercalation is not only one kind of the interactions in DNA recognition but also a pivotal step of several clinically used anti-tumor drugs such as anthracyclines, acridines and anthraquinones. To push clinical cancer therapy, the discovery of new DNA intercalators has been considered a practical approach and a number of intercalators have been recently reported. The intercalative binding properties of such molecules can also be harnessed as diagnostic probes for DNA structure in addition to DNA-directed therapeutics. Moreover, the problem of intercalation site formation in the undistorted B-DNA of different length and sequence is matter of tremendous importance in molecular modeling studies and, nowadays, three models of DNA intercalation targets have been proposed that account for the binding features of intercalators. Finally, despite DNA being an important target for several drugs, most of the docking programs are validated only for proteins and their ligands. Therefore, a default protocol to identify DNA binding modes which uses a modified canonical DNA as receptor is needed. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  4. Osteogenic Activity of Locally Applied Small Molecule Drugs in a Rat Femur Defect Model

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    Jessica A. Cottrell


    Full Text Available The long-term success of arthroplastic joints is dependent on the stabilization of the implant within the skeletal site. Movement of the arthroplastic implant within the bone can stimulate osteolysis, and therefore methods which promote rigid fixation or bone growth are expected to enhance implant stability and the long-term success of joint arthroplasty. In the present study, we used a simple bilateral bone defect model to analyze the osteogenic activity of three small-molecule drug implants via microcomputerized tomography (micro-CT and histomorphometry. In this study, we show that local delivery of alendronate, but not lovastatin or omeprazole, led to significant new bone formation at the defect site. Since alendronate impedes osteoclast-development, it is theorized that alendronate treatment results in a net increase in bone formation by preventing osteoclast mediated remodeling of the newly formed bone and upregulating osteoblasts.

  5. Methodologies for Studying B. subtilis Biofilms as a Model for Characterizing Small Molecule Biofilm Inhibitors. (United States)

    Bucher, Tabitha; Kartvelishvily, Elena; Kolodkin-Gal, Ilana


    This work assesses different methodologies to study the impact of small molecule biofilm inhibitors, such as D-amino acids, on the development and resilience of Bacillus subtilis biofilms. First, methods are presented that select for small molecule inhibitors with biofilm-specific targets in order to separate the effect of the small molecule inhibitors on planktonic growth from their effect on biofilm formation. Next, we focus on how inoculation conditions affect the sensitivity of multicellular, floating B. subtilis cultures to small molecule inhibitors. The results suggest that discrepancies in the reported effects of such inhibitors such as D-amino acids are due to inconsistent pre-culture conditions. Furthermore, a recently developed protocol is described for evaluating the contribution of small molecule treatments towards biofilm resistance to antibacterial substances. Lastly, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) techniques are presented to analyze the three-dimensional spatial arrangement of cells and their surrounding extracellular matrix in a B. subtilis biofilm. SEM facilitates insight into the three-dimensional biofilm architecture and the matrix texture. A combination of the methods described here can greatly assist the study of biofilm development in the presence and absence of biofilm inhibitors, and shed light on the mechanism of action of these inhibitors.

  6. Neuroprotective Properties of Mildronate, a Small Molecule, in a Rat Model of Parkinson’s Disease

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    Harry V. Vinters


    Full Text Available Previously, we have found that mildronate [3-(2,2,2-trimethylhydrazinium propionate dihydrate], a small molecule with charged nitrogen and oxygen atoms, protects mitochondrial metabolism that is altered by inhibitors of complex I and has neuroprotective effects in an azidothymidine-neurotoxicity mouse model. In the present study, we investigated the effects of mildronate in a rat model of Parkinson’s disease (PD that was generated via a unilateral intrastriatal injection of the neurotoxin 6-hydroxydopamine (6‑OHDA. We assessed the expression of cell biomarkers that are involved in signaling cascades and provide neural and glial integration: the neuronal marker TH (tyrosine hydroxylase; ubiquitin (a regulatory peptide involved in the ubiquitin-proteasome degradation system; Notch-3 (a marker of progenitor cells; IBA-1 (a marker of microglial cells; glial fibrillary acidic protein, GFAP (a marker of astrocytes; and inducible nitric oxide synthase, iNOS (a marker of inflammation. The data show that in the 6-OHDA-lesioned striatum, mildronate completely prevented the loss of TH, stimulated Notch-3 expression and decreased the expression of ubiquitin, GFAP and iNOS. These results provide evidence for the ability of mildronate to control the expression of an array of cellular proteins and, thus, impart multi-faceted homeostatic mechanisms in neurons and glial cells in a rat model of PD. We suggest that the use of mildronate provides a protective effect during the early stages of PD that can delay or halt the progression of this neurodegenerative disease.

  7. Small Molecules-Big Data. (United States)

    Császár, Attila G; Furtenbacher, Tibor; Árendás, Péter


    Quantum mechanics builds large-scale graphs (networks): the vertices are the discrete energy levels the quantum system possesses, and the edges are the (quantum-mechanically allowed) transitions. Parts of the complete quantum mechanical networks can be probed experimentally via high-resolution, energy-resolved spectroscopic techniques. The complete rovibronic line list information for a given molecule can only be obtained through sophisticated quantum-chemical computations. Experiments as well as computations yield what we call spectroscopic networks (SN). First-principles SNs of even small, three to five atomic molecules can be huge, qualifying for the big data description. Besides helping to interpret high-resolution spectra, the network-theoretical view offers several ideas for improving the accuracy and robustness of the increasingly important information systems containing line-by-line spectroscopic data. For example, the smallest number of measurements necessary to perform to obtain the complete list of energy levels is given by the minimum-weight spanning tree of the SN and network clustering studies may call attention to "weakest links" of a spectroscopic database. A present-day application of spectroscopic networks is within the MARVEL (Measured Active Rotational-Vibrational Energy Levels) approach, whereby the transitions information on a measured SN is turned into experimental energy levels via a weighted linear least-squares refinement. MARVEL has been used successfully for 15 molecules and allowed to validate most of the transitions measured and come up with energy levels with well-defined and realistic uncertainties. Accurate knowledge of the energy levels with computed transition intensities allows the realistic prediction of spectra under many different circumstances, e.g., for widely different temperatures. Detailed knowledge of the energy level structure of a molecule coming from a MARVEL analysis is important for a considerable number of modeling

  8. Small Molecule PET-Radiopharmaceuticals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Elsinga, Philip H.; Dierckx, Rudi A. J. O.


    This review describes several aspects required for the development of small molecule PET-tracers. Design and selection criteria are important to consider before starting to develop novel PET-tracers. Principles and latest trends in C-11 and F-18-radiochemistry are summarized. In addition an update o

  9. Small molecule fluoride toxicity agonists. (United States)

    Nelson, James W; Plummer, Mark S; Blount, Kenneth F; Ames, Tyler D; Breaker, Ronald R


    Fluoride is a ubiquitous anion that inhibits a wide variety of metabolic processes. Here, we report the identification of a series of compounds that enhance fluoride toxicity in Escherichia coli and Streptococcus mutans. These molecules were isolated by using a high-throughput screen (HTS) for compounds that increase intracellular fluoride levels as determined via a fluoride riboswitch reporter fusion construct. A series of derivatives were synthesized to examine structure-activity relationships, leading to the identification of compounds with improved activity. Thus, we demonstrate that small molecule fluoride toxicity agonists can be identified by HTS from existing chemical libraries by exploiting a natural fluoride riboswitch. In addition, our findings suggest that some molecules might be further optimized to function as binary antibacterial agents when combined with fluoride. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Small Molecule Fluoride Toxicity Agonists (United States)

    Nelson1, James W.; Plummer, Mark S.; Blount, Kenneth F.; Ames, Tyler D.; Breaker, Ronald R.


    SUMMARY Fluoride is a ubiquitous anion that inhibits a wide variety of metabolic processes. Here we report the identification of a series of compounds that enhance fluoride toxicity in Escherichia coli and Streptococcus mutans. These molecules were isolated by using a high-throughput screen (HTS) for compounds that increase intracellular fluoride levels as determined via a fluoride riboswitch-reporter fusion construct. A series of derivatives were synthesized to examine structure-activity relationships, leading to the identification of compounds with improved activity. Thus, we demonstrate that small molecule fluoride toxicity agonists can be identified by HTS from existing chemical libraries by exploiting a natural fluoride riboswitch. In addition, our findings suggest that some molecules might be further optimized to function as binary antibacterial agents when combined with fluoride. PMID:25910244

  11. Small Molecules Target Carcinogenic Proteins (United States)

    Gradinaru, Claudiu


    An ingenious cellular mechanism of effecting protein localization is prenylation: the covalent attachment of a hydrophobic prenyl group to a protein that facilitates protein association with cell membranes. Fluorescence microscopy was used to investigate whether the oncogenic Stat3 protein can undergo artificial prenylation via high-affinity prenylated small-molecule binding agents and thus be rendered inactive by localization at the plasma membrane instead of nucleus. The measurements were performed on a home-built instrument capable of recording simultaneously several optical parameters (lifetime, polarization, color, etc) and with single-molecule sensitivity. A pH-invariant fluorescein derivative with double moiety was designed to bridge a prenyl group and a small peptide that binds Stat3 with high affinity. Confocal fluorescence images show effective localization of the ligand to the membrane of liposomes. Stat3 predominantly localizes at the membrane only in the presence of the prenylated ligand. Single-molecule FRET (fluorescence resonance energy transfer) between donor-labeled prenylated agents and acceptor-labeled, surface tethered Stat3 protein is used to determine the dynamic heterogeneity of the protein-ligand interaction and follow individual binding-unbinding events in real time. The data indicates that molecules can effect protein localization, validating a therapeutic design that influences protein activity via induced localization.

  12. Development of pharmacophore models for small molecules targeting RNA: Application to the RNA repeat expansion in myotonic dystrophy type 1. (United States)

    Angelbello, Alicia J; González, Àlex L; Rzuczek, Suzanne G; Disney, Matthew D


    RNA is an important drug target, but current approaches to identify bioactive small molecules have been engineered primarily for protein targets. Moreover, the identification of small molecules that bind a specific RNA target with sufficient potency remains a challenge. Computer-aided drug design (CADD) and, in particular, ligand-based drug design provide a myriad of tools to identify rapidly new chemical entities for modulating a target based on previous knowledge of active compounds without relying on a ligand complex. Herein we describe pharmacophore virtual screening based on previously reported active molecules that target the toxic RNA that causes myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1). DM1-associated defects are caused by sequestration of muscleblind-like 1 protein (MBNL1), an alternative splicing regulator, by expanded CUG repeats (r(CUG)(exp)). Several small molecules have been found to disrupt the MBNL1-r(CUG)(exp) complex, ameliorating DM1 defects. Our pharmacophore model identified a number of potential lead compounds from which we selected 11 compounds to evaluate. Of the 11 compounds, several improved DM1 defects both in vitro and in cells.

  13. A fast empirical GAFF compatible partial atomic charge assignment scheme for modeling interactions of small molecules with biomolecular targets. (United States)

    Mukherjee, Goutam; Patra, Niladri; Barua, Poranjyoti; Jayaram, B


    We report here a new and fast approach [Transferable Partial Atomic Charge Model (TPACM4)-upto four bonds] for deriving the partial atomic charges of small molecules for use in protein/DNA-ligand docking and scoring. We have created a look-up table of 5302 atom types to cover the chemical space of C, H, O, N, S, P, F, Cl, and Br atoms in small molecules together with their quantum mechanical RESP fit charges. The atom types defined span diverse plausible chemical environments of each atom in a molecule. The partial charge on any atom in a given molecule is then assigned by a reference to the look-up table. We tested the sensitivity of the TPACM4 partial charges in estimates of hydrogen bond dimers energies, solvation free energies and protein-ligand binding free energies. An average error ±1.11 kcal/mol and a correlation coefficient of 0.90 is obtained in the calculated protein-ligand binding free energies vis-à-vis an RMS error of ±1.02 kcal/mol and a correlation coefficient of 0.92 obtained with RESP fit charges in comparison to experiment. Similar accuracies are realized in predictions of hydrogen bond energies and solvation free energies of small molecules. For a molecule containing 50-55 atoms, the method takes on the order of milliseconds on a single processor machine to assign partial atomic charges. The TPACM4 programme has been web-enabled and made freely accessible at

  14. Matrix isolation model studies on the radiation-induced transformations of small molecules of astrochemical and atmospheric interest (United States)

    Feldman, Vladimir I.; Ryazantsev, Sergey V.; Saenko, Elizaveta V.; Kameneva, Svetlana V.; Shiryaeva, Ekaterina S.


    The radiation-induced transformations of small molecules at low temperatures play an important role in the interstellar, planetary and atmospheric chemistry. This work presents a review of our recent model studies on the radiation chemistry of relevant molecules in solid noble gas (Ng) matrices, including some preliminary new results. Among the triatomic molecules, water and carbon dioxide were studied in detail. The radiation-induced degradation of isolated H2O yields hydrogen atoms and OH radicals, while oxygen atoms are produced at higher doses. Isolated CO2 molecules are decomposed to yield CO and trapped oxygen atoms. Upon annealing the trapped O and H atoms are mobilized selectively at different temperatures and react with other trapped species. The formation of HCO and HOCO radicals was observed in the mixed H2O/CO2/Ng systems. Other studies were concerned with the radiation-induced degradation of simple organic molecules (methanol, formic acid) and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCl3, CF2Cl2). Preliminary results for methanol revealed deep dehydrogenation yielding HCO and CO, whereas CO2, CO and HOCO were detected as primary products for formic acid. In the case of chlorofluorocarbons, significance of ionic channels was demonstrated. The implications of the results for modeling the processes in astrochemical ices and atmosphere are discussed.

  15. CHARMM-GUI ligand reader and modeler for CHARMM force field generation of small molecules. (United States)

    Kim, Seonghoon; Lee, Jumin; Jo, Sunhwan; Brooks, Charles L; Lee, Hui Sun; Im, Wonpil


    Reading ligand structures into any simulation program is often nontrivial and time consuming, especially when the force field parameters and/or structure files of the corresponding molecules are not available. To address this problem, we have developed Ligand Reader & Modeler in CHARMM-GUI. Users can upload ligand structure information in various forms (using PDB ID, ligand ID, SMILES, MOL/MOL2/SDF file, or PDB/mmCIF file), and the uploaded structure is displayed on a sketchpad for verification and further modification. Based on the displayed structure, Ligand Reader & Modeler generates the ligand force field parameters and necessary structure files by searching for the ligand in the CHARMM force field library or using the CHARMM general force field (CGenFF). In addition, users can define chemical substitution sites and draw substituents in each site on the sketchpad to generate a set of combinatorial structure files and corresponding force field parameters for throughput or alchemical free energy simulations. Finally, the output from Ligand Reader & Modeler can be used in other CHARMM-GUI modules to build a protein-ligand simulation system for all supported simulation programs, such as CHARMM, NAMD, GROMACS, AMBER, GENESIS, LAMMPS, Desmond, OpenMM, and CHARMM/OpenMM. Ligand Reader & Modeler is available as a functional module of CHARMM-GUI at © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Effect of small molecules modulating androgen receptor (SARMs in human prostate cancer models.

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    Anna Tesei

    Full Text Available The management of hormone-refractory prostate cancer represents a major challenge in the therapy of this tumor, and identification of novel androgen receptor antagonists is needed to render treatment more effective. We analyzed the activity of two novel androgen receptor antagonists, (S-11 and (R-9, in in vitro and in vivo experimental models of hormone-sensitive or castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC. In vitro experiments were performed on LNCaP, LNCaP-AR, LNCaP-Rbic and VCaP human prostate cancer cells. Cytotoxic activity was assessed by SRB and BrdU uptake, AR transactivation by luciferase reporter assay and PSA levels by Real Time RT-PCR and ELISA assays. Cell cycle progression-related markers were evaluated by western blot. In vivo experiments were performed on SCID mice xenografted with cells with different sensitivity to hormonal treatment. In hormone-sensitive LNCaP and LNCaP-AR cells, the latter expressing high androgen receptor levels, (R-9 and (S-11 exhibited a higher cytotoxic effect compared to that of the reference compound ((R-bicalutamide, also in the presence of the synthetic androgen R1881. Furthermore, the cytotoxic effect produced by (R-9 was higher than that of (S-11 in the two hormone-resistant LNCaP-AR and VCaP cells. A significant reduction in PSA levels was observed after exposure to both molecules. Moreover, (S-11 and (R-9 inhibited DNA synthesis by blocking the androgen-induced increase in cyclin D1 protein levels. In vivo studies on the toxicological profile of (R-9 did not reveal the presence of adverse events. Furthermore, (R-9 inhibited tumor growth in various in vivo models, especially LNCaP-Rbic xenografts, representative of recurrent disease. Our in vitro results highlight the antitumor activity of the two novel molecules (R-9 and (S-11, making them a potentially attractive option for the treatment of CRPC.

  17. Small Molecule Organic Optoelectronic Devices (United States)

    Bakken, Nathan

    Organic optoelectronics include a class of devices synthesized from carbon containing 'small molecule' thin films without long range order crystalline or polymer structure. Novel properties such as low modulus and flexibility as well as excellent device performance such as photon emission approaching 100% internal quantum efficiency have accelerated research in this area substantially. While optoelectronic organic light emitting devices have already realized commercial application, challenges to obtain extended lifetime for the high energy visible spectrum and the ability to reproduce natural white light with a simple architecture have limited the value of this technology for some display and lighting applications. In this research, novel materials discovered from a systematic analysis of empirical device data are shown to produce high quality white light through combination of monomer and excimer emission from a single molecule: platinum(II) bis(methyl-imidazolyl)toluene chloride (Pt-17). Illumination quality achieved Commission Internationale de L'Eclairage (CIE) chromaticity coordinates (x = 0.31, y = 0.38) and color rendering index (CRI) > 75. Further optimization of a device containing Pt-17 resulted in a maximum forward viewing power efficiency of 37.8 lm/W on a plain glass substrate. In addition, accelerated aging tests suggest high energy blue emission from a halogen-free cyclometalated platinum complex could demonstrate degradation rates comparable to known stable emitters. Finally, a buckling based metrology is applied to characterize the mechanical properties of small molecule organic thin films towards understanding the deposition kinetics responsible for an elastic modulus that is both temperature and thickness dependent. These results could contribute to the viability of organic electronic technology in potentially flexible display and lighting applications. The results also provide insight to organic film growth kinetics responsible for optical

  18. Protein Scaffolding for Small Molecule Catalysts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baker, David [Univ. of Washington, Seattle, WA (United States)


    We aim to design hybrid catalysts for energy production and storage that combine the high specificity, affinity, and tunability of proteins with the potent chemical reactivities of small organometallic molecules. The widely used Rosetta and RosettaDesign methodologies will be extended to model novel protein / small molecule catalysts in which one or many small molecule active centers are supported and coordinated by protein scaffolding. The promise of such hybrid molecular systems will be demonstrated with the nickel-phosphine hydrogenase of DuBois et. al.We will enhance the hydrogenase activity of the catalyst by designing protein scaffolds that incorporate proton relays and systematically modulate the local environment of the catalyticcenter. In collaboration with DuBois and Shaw, the designs will be experimentally synthesized and characterized.

  19. Threshold-like complexation of conjugated polymers with small molecule acceptors in solution within the neighbor-effect model. (United States)

    Sosorev, Andrey Yu; Parashchuk, Olga D; Zapunidi, Sergey A; Kashtanov, Grigoriy S; Golovnin, Ilya V; Kommanaboyina, Srikanth; Perepichka, Igor F; Paraschuk, Dmitry Yu


    In some donor-acceptor blends based on conjugated polymers, a pronounced charge-transfer complex (CTC) forms in the electronic ground state. In contrast to small-molecule donor-acceptor blends, the CTC concentration in polymer:acceptor solution can increase with the acceptor content in a threshold-like way. This threshold-like behavior was earlier attributed to the neighbor effect (NE) in the polymer complexation, i.e., next CTCs are preferentially formed near the existing ones; however, the NE origin is unknown. To address the factors affecting the NE, we record the optical absorption data for blends of the most studied conjugated polymers, poly(2-methoxy-5-(2-ethylhexyloxy)-1,4-phenylenevinylene) (MEH-PPV) and poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT), with electron acceptors of fluorene series, 1,8-dinitro-9,10-antraquinone (), and 7,7,8,8-tetracyanoquinodimethane () in different solvents, and then analyze the data within the NE model. We have found that the NE depends on the polymer and acceptor molecular skeletons and solvent, while it does not depend on the acceptor electron affinity and polymer concentration. We conclude that the NE operates within a single macromolecule and stems from planarization of the polymer chain involved in the CTC with an acceptor molecule; as a result, the probability of further complexation with the next acceptor molecules at the adjacent repeat units increases. The steric and electronic microscopic mechanisms of NE are discussed.

  20. Studying the Immunomodulatory Effects of Small Molecule Ras-Inhibitors in Animal Models of Rheumatoid Arthritis (United States)


    GTPases appear to be a promising molecular target for inhibiting T cell activation in RA. Based on an innovative concept Kloog (the partnering PI) and...GTPases are molecular switches that regulate key cellular processes, such as proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis, and motility. In T non-small-cell lung cancer patients (NCT00531401; Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, NY). Thus, Salirasib® is the only available successful

  1. An overview of the binding models of FGFR tyrosine kinases in complex with small molecule inhibitors. (United States)

    Cheng, Weiyan; Wang, Mixiang; Tian, Xin; Zhang, Xiaojian


    The fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) family receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) includes four structurally related members, termed as FGFR1, FGFR2, FGFR3, and FGFR4. Given its intimate role in the progression of several solid tumors, excessive FGFR signaling provides an opportunity for anticancer therapy. Along with extensive pharmacological studies validating the therapeutic potential of targeting the FGFRs for cancer treatment, co-crystal structures of FGFRs/inhibitors are continuously coming up to study the mechanism of actions and explore new inhibitors. Herein, we review the reported co-crystals of FGFRs in complex with the corresponding inhibitors, main focusing our attention on the binding models and the pharmacological activities of the inhibitors.

  2. Structure Based Modeling of Small Molecules Binding to the TLR7 by Atomistic Level Simulations

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    Francesco Gentile


    Full Text Available Toll-Like Receptors (TLR are a large family of proteins involved in the immune system response. Both the activation and the inhibition of these receptors can have positive effects on several diseases, including viral pathologies and cancer, therefore prompting the development of new compounds. In order to provide new indications for the design of Toll-Like Receptor 7 (TLR7-targeting drugs, the mechanism of interaction between the TLR7 and two important classes of agonists (imidazoquinoline and adenine derivatives was investigated through docking and Molecular Dynamics simulations. To perform the computational analysis, a new model for the dimeric form of the receptors was necessary and therefore created. Qualitative and quantitative differences between agonists and inactive compounds were determined. The in silico results were compared with previous experimental observations and employed to define the ligand binding mechanism of TLR7.

  3. Small Molecules in the Cone Snail Arsenal. (United States)

    Neves, Jorge L B; Lin, Zhenjian; Imperial, Julita S; Antunes, Agostinho; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Olivera, Baldomero M; Schmidt, Eric W


    Cone snails are renowned for producing peptide-based venom, containing conopeptides and conotoxins, to capture their prey. A novel small-molecule guanine derivative with unprecedented features, genuanine, was isolated from the venom of two cone snail species. Genuanine causes paralysis in mice, indicating that small molecules and not just polypeptides may contribute to the activity of cone snail venom.

  4. Hydrophobic Porous Material Adsorbs Small Organic Molecules (United States)

    Sharma, Pramod K.; Hickey, Gregory S.


    Composite molecular-sieve material has pore structure designed specifically for preferential adsorption of organic molecules for sizes ranging from 3 to 6 angstrom. Design based on principle that contaminant molecules become strongly bound to surface of adsorbent when size of contaminant molecules is nearly same as that of pores in adsorbent. Material used to remove small organic contaminant molecules from vacuum systems or from enclosed gaseous environments like closed-loop life-support systems.

  5. Small molecules for big tasks

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jiarui Wu


    @@ One of the most important achievements in the post-genome era is discovery of microRNAs (miRNAs), which widely exist from simple-genome organisms such as viruses and bacteria to complexgenome organisms such as plants and animals.miRNAs are single-stranded non-coding RNAs of 18-25 nucleotides in length, which are generated from larger precursors that are transcribed from noncoding genes.As a new type of regulatory molecules, miRNAs present unique features in regulating gene and its products, including rapidly turning off protein production, reversibly, and compartmentalized regulating gene expression.

  6. Modeling Fast Electron Dynamics with Real-Time Time-Dependent Density Functional Theory: Application to Small Molecules and Chromophores. (United States)

    Lopata, Kenneth; Govind, Niranjan


    The response of matter to external fields forms the basis for a vast wealth of fundamental physical processes ranging from light harvesting to nanoscale electron transport. Accurately modeling ultrafast electron dynamics in excited systems thus offers unparalleled insight but requires an inherently nonlinear time-resolved approach. To this end, an efficient and massively parallel real-time real-space time-dependent density functional theory (RT-TDDFT) implementation in NWChem is presented. The implementation is first validated against linear-response TDDFT and experimental results for a series of molecules subjected to small electric field perturbations. Second, nonlinear excitation of green fluorescent protein is studied, which shows a blue-shift in the spectrum with increasing perturbation, as well as a saturation in absorption. Next, the charge dynamics of optically excited zinc porphyrin is presented in real time and real space, with relevance to charge injection in photovoltaic devices. Finally, intermolecular excitation in an adenine-thymine base pair is studied using the BNL range separated functional [ Baer , R. ; Neuhauser , D. Phys. Rev. Lett. 2005 , 94 , 043002 ], demonstrating the utility of a real-time approach in capturing charge transfer processes.

  7. Small-Molecule Carbohydrate-Based Immunostimulants. (United States)

    Marzabadi, Cecilia H; Franck, Richard W


    In this review, we discuss small-molecule, carbohydrate-based immunostimulants that target Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR-4) and cluster of differentiation 1D (CD1d) receptors. The design and use of these molecules in immunotherapy as well as results from their use in clinical trials are described. How these molecules work and their utilization as vaccine adjuvants are also discussed. Future applications and extensions for the use of these analogues as therapeutic agents will be outlined.

  8. Novel Small-Molecule Antibacterial Agents (United States)


    of Papers published in peer-reviewed journals: Number of Papers published in non peer-reviewed journals: Novel Small-Molecule Antibacterial Agents...Release; Distribution Unlimited Novel Small-Molecule Antibacterial Agents The views, opinions and/or findings contained in this report are those of...half life of ~31 days. (a) Papers published in peer-reviewed journals (N/A for none) Enter List of papers submitted or published that acknowledge ARO

  9. Pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and efficacy of a small-molecule SMN2 splicing modifier in mouse models of spinal muscular atrophy (United States)

    Zhao, Xin; Feng, Zhihua; Ling, Karen K. Y.; Mollin, Anna; Sheedy, Josephine; Yeh, Shirley; Petruska, Janet; Narasimhan, Jana; Dakka, Amal; Welch, Ellen M.; Karp, Gary; Chen, Karen S.; Metzger, Friedrich; Ratni, Hasane; Lotti, Francesco; Tisdale, Sarah; Naryshkin, Nikolai A.; Pellizzoni, Livio; Paushkin, Sergey; Ko, Chien-Ping; Weetall, Marla


    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is caused by the loss or mutation of both copies of the survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1) gene. The related SMN2 gene is retained, but due to alternative splicing of exon 7, produces insufficient levels of the SMN protein. Here, we systematically characterize the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics properties of the SMN splicing modifier SMN-C1. SMN-C1 is a low-molecular weight compound that promotes the inclusion of exon 7 and increases production of SMN protein in human cells and in two transgenic mouse models of SMA. Furthermore, increases in SMN protein levels in peripheral blood mononuclear cells and skin correlate with those in the central nervous system (CNS), indicating that a change of these levels in blood or skin can be used as a non-invasive surrogate to monitor increases of SMN protein levels in the CNS. Consistent with restored SMN function, SMN-C1 treatment increases the levels of spliceosomal and U7 small-nuclear RNAs and corrects RNA processing defects induced by SMN deficiency in the spinal cord of SMNΔ7 SMA mice. A 100% or greater increase in SMN protein in the CNS of SMNΔ7 SMA mice robustly improves the phenotype. Importantly, a ∼50% increase in SMN leads to long-term survival, but the SMA phenotype is only partially corrected, indicating that certain SMA disease manifestations may respond to treatment at lower doses. Overall, we provide important insights for the translation of pre-clinical data to the clinic and further therapeutic development of this series of molecules for SMA treatment. PMID:26931466

  10. Chapter 3: Small molecules and disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David S Wishart

    Full Text Available "Big" molecules such as proteins and genes still continue to capture the imagination of most biologists, biochemists and bioinformaticians. "Small" molecules, on the other hand, are the molecules that most biologists, biochemists and bioinformaticians prefer to ignore. However, it is becoming increasingly apparent that small molecules such as amino acids, lipids and sugars play a far more important role in all aspects of disease etiology and disease treatment than we realized. This particular chapter focuses on an emerging field of bioinformatics called "chemical bioinformatics"--a discipline that has evolved to help address the blended chemical and molecular biological needs of toxicogenomics, pharmacogenomics, metabolomics and systems biology. In the following pages we will cover several topics related to chemical bioinformatics. First, a brief overview of some of the most important or useful chemical bioinformatic resources will be given. Second, a more detailed overview will be given on those particular resources that allow researchers to connect small molecules to diseases. This section will focus on describing a number of recently developed databases or knowledgebases that explicitly relate small molecules--either as the treatment, symptom or cause--to disease. Finally a short discussion will be provided on newly emerging software tools that exploit these databases as a means to discover new biomarkers or even new treatments for disease.

  11. Small Molecules that Protect Mitochondrial Function from Metabolic Stress Decelerate Loss of Photoreceptor Cells in Murine Retinal Degeneration Models. (United States)

    Beeson, Craig; Lindsey, Chris; Nasarre, Cecile; Bandyopadhyay, Mausumi; Perron, Nathan; Rohrer, Bärbel


    One feature common to many of the pathways implicated in retinal degeneration is increased metabolic stress leading to impaired mitochondrial function. We found that exposure of cells to calcium ionophores or oxidants as metabolic stressors diminish maximal mitochondrial capacity. A library of 50,000 structurally diverse "drug-like" molecules was screened for protection against loss of calcium-induced loss of mitochondrial capacity in 661W rod-derived cells and C6 glioblastomas. Initial protective hits were then tested for protection against IBMX-induced loss of mitochondrial capacity as measured via respirometry. Molecules that protected mitochondria were then evaluated for protection of rod photoreceptor cells in retinal explants from rd1 mice. Two of the molecules attenuated loss of photoreceptor cells in the rd1 model. In the 661W cells, exposure to calcium ionophore or tert-butylhydroperoxide caused mitochondrial fragmentation that was blocked with the both compounds. Our studies have identified molecules that protect mitochondria and attenuate loss of photoreceptors in models of retinal degeneration suggesting that they could be good leads for development of therapeutic drugs for treatment of a wide variety of retinal dystrophies.

  12. Global analysis of small molecule binding to related protein targets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix A Kruger


    Full Text Available We report on the integration of pharmacological data and homology information for a large scale analysis of small molecule binding to related targets. Differences in small molecule binding have been assessed for curated pairs of human to rat orthologs and also for recently diverged human paralogs. Our analysis shows that in general, small molecule binding is conserved for pairs of human to rat orthologs. Using statistical tests, we identified a small number of cases where small molecule binding is different between human and rat, some of which had previously been reported in the literature. Knowledge of species specific pharmacology can be advantageous for drug discovery, where rats are frequently used as a model system. For human paralogs, we demonstrate a global correlation between sequence identity and the binding of small molecules with equivalent affinity. Our findings provide an initial general model relating small molecule binding and sequence divergence, containing the foundations for a general model to anticipate and predict within-target-family selectivity.

  13. Small Molecule Subgraph Detector (SMSD toolkit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rahman Syed


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Finding one small molecule (query in a large target library is a challenging task in computational chemistry. Although several heuristic approaches are available using fragment-based chemical similarity searches, they fail to identify exact atom-bond equivalence between the query and target molecules and thus cannot be applied to complex chemical similarity searches, such as searching a complete or partial metabolic pathway. In this paper we present a new Maximum Common Subgraph (MCS tool: SMSD (Small Molecule Subgraph Detector to overcome the issues with current heuristic approaches to small molecule similarity searches. The MCS search implemented in SMSD incorporates chemical knowledge (atom type match with bond sensitive and insensitive information while searching molecular similarity. We also propose a novel method by which solutions obtained by each MCS run can be ranked using chemical filters such as stereochemistry, bond energy, etc. Results In order to benchmark and test the tool, we performed a 50,000 pair-wise comparison between KEGG ligands and PDB HET Group atoms. In both cases the SMSD was shown to be more efficient than the widely used MCS module implemented in the Chemistry Development Kit (CDK in generating MCS solutions from our test cases. Conclusion Presently this tool can be applied to various areas of bioinformatics and chemo-informatics for finding exhaustive MCS matches. For example, it can be used to analyse metabolic networks by mapping the atoms between reactants and products involved in reactions. It can also be used to detect the MCS/substructure searches in small molecules reported by metabolome experiments, as well as in the screening of drug-like compounds with similar substructures. Thus, we present a robust tool that can be used for multiple applications, including the discovery of new drug molecules. This tool is freely available on

  14. Model molecules mimicking asphaltenes. (United States)

    Sjöblom, Johan; Simon, Sébastien; Xu, Zhenghe


    Asphalthenes are typically defined as the fraction of petroleum insoluble in n-alkanes (typically heptane, but also hexane or pentane) but soluble in toluene. This fraction causes problems of emulsion formation and deposition/precipitation during crude oil production, processing and transport. From the definition it follows that asphaltenes are not a homogeneous fraction but is composed of molecules polydisperse in molecular weight, structure and functionalities. Their complexity makes the understanding of their properties difficult. Proper model molecules with well-defined structures which can resemble the properties of real asphaltenes can help to improve this understanding. Over the last ten years different research groups have proposed different asphaltene model molecules and studied them to determine how well they can mimic the properties of asphaltenes and determine the mechanisms behind the properties of asphaltenes. This article reviews the properties of the different classes of model compounds proposed and present their properties by comparison with fractionated asphaltenes. After presenting the interest of developing model asphaltenes, the composition and properties of asphaltenes are presented, followed by the presentation of approaches and accomplishments of different schools working on asphaltene model compounds. The presentation of bulk and interfacial properties of perylene-based model asphaltene compounds developed by Sjöblom et al. is the subject of the next part. Finally the emulsion-stabilization properties of fractionated asphaltenes and model asphaltene compounds is presented and discussed.

  15. Database of Small Molecule Thermochemistry for Combustion

    KAUST Repository

    Goldsmith, C. Franklin


    High-accuracy ab initio thermochemistry is presented for 219 small molecules relevant in combustion chemistry, including many radical, biradical, and triplet species. These values are critical for accurate kinetic modeling. The RQCISD(T)/cc-PV∞QZ//B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) method was used to compute the electronic energies. A bond additivity correction for this method has been developed to remove systematic errors in the enthalpy calculations, using the Active Thermochemical Tables as reference values. On the basis of comparison with the benchmark data, the 3σ uncertainty in the standard-state heat of formation is 0.9 kcal/mol, or within chemical accuracy. An uncertainty analysis is presented for the entropy and heat capacity. In many cases, the present values are the most accurate and comprehensive numbers available. The present work is compared to several published databases. In some cases, there are large discrepancies and errors in published databases; the present work helps to resolve these problems. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

  16. Small molecule-guided thermoresponsive supramolecular assemblies

    KAUST Repository

    Rancatore, Benjamin J.


    Small organic molecules with strong intermolecular interactions have a wide range of desirable optical and electronic properties and rich phase behaviors. Incorporating them into block copolymer (BCP)-based supramolecules opens new routes to generate functional responsive materials. Using oligothiophene- containing supramolecules, we present systematic studies of critical thermodynamic parameters and kinetic pathway that govern the coassemblies of BCP and strongly interacting small molecules. A number of potentially useful morphologies for optoelectronic materials, including a nanoscopic network of oligothiophene and nanoscopic crystalline lamellae, were obtained by varying the assembly pathway. Hierarchical coassemblies of oligothiophene and BCP, rather than macrophase separation, can be obtained. Crystallization of the oligothiophene not only induces chain stretching of the BCP block the oligothiophene is hydrogen bonded to but also changes the conformation of the other BCP coil block. This leads to an over 70% change in the BCP periodicity (e.g., from 31 to 53 nm) as the oligothiophene changes from a melt to a crystalline state, which provides access to a large BCP periodicity using fairly low molecular weight BCP. The present studies have demonstrated the experimental feasibility of generating thermoresponsive materials that convert heat into mechanical energy. Incorporating strongly interacting small molecules into BCP supramolecules effectively increases the BCP periodicity and may also open new opportunities to tailor their optical properties without the need for high molecular weight BCP. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

  17. Fluorescence Polarization Assays in Small Molecule Screening (United States)

    Lea, Wendy A.; Simeonov, Anton


    Importance of the field Fluorescence polarization (FP) is a homogeneous method that allows rapid and quantitative analysis of diverse molecular interactions and enzyme activities. This technique has been widely utilized in clinical and biomedical settings, including the diagnosis of certain diseases and monitoring therapeutic drug levels in body fluids. Recent developments in the field has been symbolized by the facile adoption of FP in high-throughput screening (HTS) and small molecule drug discovery of an increasing range of target classes. Areas covered in this review The article provides a brief overview on the theoretical foundation of FP, followed by updates on recent advancements in its application for various drug target classes, including G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), enzymes and protein-protein interactions (PPIs). The strengths and weaknesses of this method, practical considerations in assay design, novel applications, and future directions are also discussed. What the reader will gain The reader will be informed of the most recent advancements and future directions of FP application to small molecule screening. Take home message In addition to its continued utilization in high-throughput screening, FP has expanded into new disease and target areas and has been marked by increased use of labeled small molecule ligands for receptor binding studies. PMID:22328899

  18. PBM: a software package to create, display and manipulate interactively models of small molecules and proteins on IBM-compatible PCs. (United States)

    Perrakis, A; Constantinides, C; Athanasiades, A; Hamodrakas, S J


    The PBM package was developed to create, display and conveniently manipulate protein and small molecule structures on IBM-compatible microcomputers. It consists of four modules: CREATE, SPHERE, RIBBON and CONVERT. CREATE includes commands to create or alter ('mutate') the primary and subsequently the tertiary structure of a given peptide or protein by defining phi and psi angles of residues at will, options to add, delete or alter atoms in a structure, utilities to choose easily between the most common rotamers of amino acid residue sidechains and options to analyse in various ways a protein conformation. SPHERE provides for an interactive manipulation of structures containing up to 2700 atoms which can belong up to six different molecules. All manipulations can be made with the use of an ordinary mouse, by choosing from a variety of pull-down menus. Three types of models can be implemented to display molecules on the computer screen or the plotter: skeletal, solid space-filling and wireframe space-filling models. RIBBON creates ribbon models of proteins and allows for a limited variety of interactive manipulations. CONVERT is a file converter, which is capable of converting files of atom coordinates of literally any format to Brookhaven Data Bank format files. The package produces very good results for protein molecules of reasonable sizes, both in terms of graphics quality and speed of operations, on an 80486 IBM PC-compatible machine equipped with a 1 MByte VGA display card and a colour VGA monitor, which is a recommended configuration.

  19. Evaluating enzymatic synthesis of small molecule drugs. (United States)

    Moura, Matthew; Finkle, Justin; Stainbrook, Sarah; Greene, Jennifer; Broadbelt, Linda J; Tyo, Keith E J


    There have been many achievements in applying biochemical synthetic routes to the synthesis of commodity chemicals. However, most of these endeavors have focused on optimizing and increasing the yields of naturally existing pathways. We sought to evaluate the potential for biosynthesis beyond the limits of known biochemistry towards the production of small molecule drugs that do not exist in nature. Because of the potential for improved yields compared to total synthesis, and therefore lower manufacturing costs, we focused on drugs for diseases endemic to many resource poor regions, like tuberculosis and HIV. Using generalized biochemical reaction rules, we were able to design biochemical pathways for the production of eight small molecule drugs or drug precursors and identify potential enzyme-substrate pairs for nearly every predicted reaction. All pathways begin from native metabolites, abrogating the need for specialized precursors. The simulated pathways showed several trends with the sequential ordering of reactions as well as the types of chemistries used. For some compounds, the main obstacles to finding feasible biochemical pathways were the lack of appropriate, natural starting compounds and a low diversity of biochemical coupling reactions necessary to synthesize molecules with larger molecular size.

  20. Predicting small molecule fluorescent probe localization in living cells using QSAR modeling. 1. Overview and models for probes of structure, properties and function in single cells. (United States)

    Horobin, R W; Rashid-Doubell, F; Pediani, J D; Milligan, G


    Small molecule fluorochromes (synonyms: biosensors, chemosensors, fluorescent probes, vital stains) are widely used to investigate the structure, composition, physicochemical properties and biological functions of living cells, tissues and organisms. Selective entry and accumulation within particular cells and cellular structures are key processes for achieving these diverse objectives. Despite the complexities, probes routinely are applied using standard protocols, often without experimenter awareness of what factors that control accumulation and localization. The mechanisms of many such selective accumulations, however, now are known. Moreover, the influence of physicochemical properties of probes on their uptake and localization often can be defined numerically, hence predicted, using quantitative structure activity relations (QSAR) models with its required numerical structure parameters (or "descriptors"). The state of the art of this approach is described. Available QSAR models are summarized for uptake into cells and localization in the cytosol, endoplasmic reticulum, generic biomembranes, Golgi apparatus, lipid droplets, lysosomes/endosomes, mitochondria, eukaryotic nuclei (histones and DNA), plasma membrane, and ribosomal RNA (cytoplasmic and nucleolar). Integration of such core models to both aid understanding and troubleshooting of current fluorescent probes and to assist the design of novel probes is outlined and illustrated using case examples. Limitations and generic problems arising with this approach and comments on application of such approaches to xenobiotics other than probes, e.g., drugs and herbicides, together with a brief note about an alternative approach to prediction, are given.

  1. Strategy to discover diverse optimal molecules in the small molecule universe. (United States)

    Rupakheti, Chetan; Virshup, Aaron; Yang, Weitao; Beratan, David N


    The small molecule universe (SMU) is defined as a set of over 10(60) synthetically feasible organic molecules with molecular weight less than ∼500 Da. Exhaustive enumerations and evaluation of all SMU molecules for the purpose of discovering favorable structures is impossible. We take a stochastic approach and extend the ACSESS framework ( Virshup et al. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2013 , 135 , 7296 - 7303 ) to develop diversity oriented molecular libraries that can generate a set of compounds that is representative of the small molecule universe and that also biases the library toward favorable physical property values. We show that the approach is efficient compared to exhaustive enumeration and to existing evolutionary algorithms for generating such libraries by testing in the NKp fitness landscape model and in the fully enumerated GDB-9 chemical universe containing 3 × 10(5) molecules.

  2. Modeling corrosion inhibition efficacy of small organic molecules as non-toxic chromate alternatives using comparative molecular surface analysis (CoMSA). (United States)

    Fernandez, Michael; Breedon, Michael; Cole, Ivan S; Barnard, Amanda S


    Traditionally many structural alloys are protected by primer coatings loaded with corrosion inhibiting additives. Strontium Chromate (or other chromates) have been shown to be extremely effectively inhibitors, and find extensive use in protective primer formulations. Unfortunately, hexavalent chromium which imbues these coatings with their corrosion inhibiting properties is also highly toxic, and their use is being increasingly restricted by legislation. In this work we explore a novel tridimensional Quantitative-Structure Property Relationship (3D-QSPR) approach, comparative molecular surface analysis (CoMSA), which was developed to recognize "high-performing" corrosion inhibitor candidates from the distributions of electronegativity, polarizability and van der Waals volume on the molecular surfaces of 28 small organic molecules. Multivariate statistical analysis identified five prototypes molecules, which are capable of explaining 71% of the variance within the inhibitor data set; whilst a further five molecules were also identified as archetypes, describing 75% of data variance. All active corrosion inhibitors, at a 80% threshold, were successfully recognized by the CoMSA model with adequate specificity and precision higher than 70% and 60%, respectively. The model was also capable of identifying structural patterns, that revealed reasonable starting points for where structural changes may augment corrosion inhibition efficacy. The presented methodology can be applied to other functional molecules and extended to cover structure-activity studies in a diverse range of areas such as drug design and novel material discovery. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Sorption of small molecules in polymeric media (United States)

    Camboni, Federico; Sokolov, Igor M.


    We discuss the sorption of penetrant molecules from the gas phase by a polymeric medium within a model which is very close in spirit to the dual sorption mode model: the penetrant molecules are partly dissolved within the polymeric matrix, partly fill the preexisting voids. The only difference with the initial dual sorption mode situation is the assumption that the two populations of molecules are in equilibrium with each other. Applying basic thermodynamics principles we obtain the dependence of the penetrant concentration on the pressure in the gas phase and find that this is expressed via the Lambert W-function, a different functional form than the one proposed by dual sorption mode model. The Lambert-like isotherms appear universally at low and moderate pressures and originate from the assumption that the internal energy in a polymer-penetrant-void ternary mixture is (in the lowest order) a bilinear form in the concentrations of the three components. Fitting the existing data shows that in the domain of parameters where the dual sorption mode model is typically applied, the Lambert function, which describes the same behavior as the one proposed by the gas-polymer matrix model, fits the data equally well.

  4. Small azomethine molecules and their use in photovoltaic devices

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dingemans, T.J.; Petrus, M.L.


    The present invention is in the field of a small azomethine molecule having photovoltaic characteristics, a method of synthesizing said molecule, use of said molecule in a photovoltaic device, a solar cell comprising said molecule, and a film comprising said molecule. The present molecules may find

  5. Protein homology reveals new targets for bioactive small molecules. (United States)

    Gfeller, David; Zoete, Vincent


    The functional impact of small molecules is increasingly being assessed in different eukaryotic species through large-scale phenotypic screening initiatives. Identifying the targets of these molecules is crucial to mechanistically understand their function and uncover new therapeutically relevant modes of action. However, despite extensive work carried out in model organisms and human, it is still unclear to what extent one can use information obtained in one species to make predictions in other species. Here, for the first time, we explore and validate at a large scale the use of protein homology relationships to predict the targets of small molecules across different species. Our results show that exploiting target homology can significantly improve the predictions, especially for molecules experimentally tested in other species. Interestingly, when considering separately orthology and paralogy relationships, we observe that mapping small molecule interactions among orthologs improves prediction accuracy, while including paralogs does not improve and even sometimes worsens the prediction accuracy. Overall, our results provide a novel approach to integrate chemical screening results across multiple species and highlight the promises and remaining challenges of using protein homology for small molecule target identification. Homology-based predictions can be tested on our website or Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail:

  6. Small Molecule Library Synthesis Using Segmented Flow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina M. Thompson


    Full Text Available Flow chemistry has gained considerable recognition as a simple, efficient, and safe technology for the synthesis of many types of organic and inorganic molecules ranging in scope from large complex natural products to silicon nanoparticles. In this paper we describe a method that adapts flow chemistry to the synthesis of libraries of compounds using a fluorous immiscible solvent as a spacer between reactions. The methodology was validated in the synthesis of two small heterocycle containing libraries. The reactions were performed on a 0.2 mmol scale, enabling tens of milligrams of material to be generated in a single 200 mL reaction plug. The methodology allowed library synthesis in half the time of conventional microwave synthesis while maintaining similar yields. The ability to perform multiple, potentially unrelated reactions in a single run is ideal for making small quantities of many different compounds quickly and efficiently.

  7. Physiological roles of small RNA molecules. (United States)

    Michaux, Charlotte; Verneuil, Nicolas; Hartke, Axel; Giard, Jean-Christophe


    Unlike proteins, RNA molecules have emerged lately as key players in regulation in bacteria. Most reviews hitherto focused on the experimental and/or in silico methods used to identify genes encoding small RNAs (sRNAs) or on the diverse mechanisms of these RNA regulators to modulate expression of their targets. However, less is known about their biological functions and their implications in various physiological responses. This review aims to compile what is known presently about the diverse roles of sRNA transcripts in the regulation of metabolic processes, in different growth conditions, in adaptation to stress and in microbial pathogenesis. Several recent studies revealed that sRNA molecules are implicated in carbon metabolism and transport, amino acid metabolism or metal sensing. Moreover, regulatory RNAs participate in cellular adaptation to environmental changes, e.g. through quorum sensing systems or development of biofilms, and analyses of several sRNAs under various physiological stresses and culture conditions have already been performed. In addition, recent experiments performed with Gram-positive and Gram-negative pathogens showed that regulatory RNAs play important roles in microbial virulence and during infection. The combined results show the diversity of regulation mechanisms and physiological processes in which sRNA molecules are key actors.

  8. Small molecule phagocytosis inhibitors for immune cytopenias. (United States)

    Neschadim, Anton; Kotra, Lakshmi P; Branch, Donald R


    Immune cytopenias are conditions characterized by low blood cell counts, such as platelets in immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) and red blood cells in autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA). Chronic ITP affects approximately 4 in 100,000 adults annually while AIHA is much less common. Extravascular phagocytosis and massive destruction of autoantibody-opsonized blood cells by macrophages in the spleen and liver are the hallmark of these conditions. Current treatment modalities for ITP and AIHA include the first-line use of corticosteroids; whereas, IVIg shows efficacy in ITP but not AIHA. One main mechanism of action by which IVIg treatment leads to the reduction in platelet destruction rates in ITP is thought to involve Fcγ receptor (FcγR) blockade, ultimately leading to the inhibition of extravascular platelet phagocytosis. IVIg, which is manufactured from the human plasma of thousands of donors, is a limited resource, and alternative treatments, particularly those based on bioavailable small molecules, are needed. In this review, we overview the pathophysiology of ITP, the role of Fcγ receptors, and the mechanisms of action of IVIg in treating ITP, and outline the efforts and progress towards developing novel, first-in-class inhibitors of phagocytosis as synthetic, small molecule substitutes for IVIg in ITP and other conditions where the pathobiology of the disease involves phagocytosis.

  9. Multivalent Small-Molecule Pan-RAS Inhibitors. (United States)

    Welsch, Matthew E; Kaplan, Anna; Chambers, Jennifer M; Stokes, Michael E; Bos, Pieter H; Zask, Arie; Zhang, Yan; Sanchez-Martin, Marta; Badgley, Michael A; Huang, Christine S; Tran, Timothy H; Akkiraju, Hemanth; Brown, Lewis M; Nandakumar, Renu; Cremers, Serge; Yang, Wan Seok; Tong, Liang; Olive, Kenneth P; Ferrando, Adolfo; Stockwell, Brent R


    Design of small molecules that disrupt protein-protein interactions, including the interaction of RAS proteins and their effectors, may provide chemical probes and therapeutic agents. We describe here the synthesis and testing of potential small-molecule pan-RAS ligands, which were designed to interact with adjacent sites on the surface of oncogenic KRAS. One compound, termed 3144, was found to bind to RAS proteins using microscale thermophoresis, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and isothermal titration calorimetry and to exhibit lethality in cells partially dependent on expression of RAS proteins. This compound was metabolically stable in liver microsomes and displayed anti-tumor activity in xenograft mouse cancer models. These findings suggest that pan-RAS inhibition may be an effective therapeutic strategy for some cancers and that structure-based design of small molecules targeting multiple adjacent sites to create multivalent inhibitors may be effective for some proteins. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Minimum Transendothelial Electrical Resistance Thresholds for the Study of Small and Large Molecule Drug Transport in a Human in Vitro Blood-Brain Barrier Model. (United States)

    Mantle, Jennifer L; Min, Lie; Lee, Kelvin H


    A human cell-based in vitro model that can accurately predict drug penetration into the brain as well as metrics to assess these in vitro models are valuable for the development of new therapeutics. Here, human induced pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) are differentiated into a polarized monolayer that express blood-brain barrier (BBB)-specific proteins and have transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) values greater than 2500 Ω·cm(2). By assessing the permeabilities of several known drugs, a benchmarking system to evaluate brain permeability of drugs was established. Furthermore, relationships between TEER and permeability to both small and large molecules were established, demonstrating that different minimum TEER thresholds must be achieved to study the brain transport of these two classes of drugs. This work demonstrates that this hPSC-derived BBB model exhibits an in vivo-like phenotype, and the benchmarks established here are useful for assessing functionality of other in vitro BBB models.

  11. Small molecule TBTC as a new selective retinoid X receptor α agonist improves behavioral deficit in Alzheimer's disease model mice. (United States)

    Sun, Yanyan; Fan, Jun; Zhu, Zhiyuan; Guo, Xiaodan; Zhou, Tingting; Duan, Wenhu; Shen, Xu


    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disease, which is characterized by progressive cognitive impairments. The β-amyloid (Aβ)-induced neurodegeneration is determined as the main pathogenesis of AD, and either decrease of Aβ production or increase of Aβ clearance is beneficial in the treatment of AD, while Aβ clearance regulation seems to be more attractive as a promising therapeutic strategy against AD based on the fact that the insufficient clearance of Aβ is tightly associated with the late onset of AD that is represented as the majority of AD cases. Here, we report that the small molecular compound, methyl 2-amino-6-(tert-butyl)-4,5,6,7-tetrahydrobenzo[b]thiophene-3-carboxylate (TBTC), as a selective agonist of retinoid X receptor α (RXRα) can effectively activate the heterodimerization of RXRα with either liver X receptor α (LXRα) or peroxisome proliferator activated receptor γ (PPARγ), stimulate the expressions of the genes of apoE, ABCA1 and ABCG1, and decrease Aβ content both in cells and animal models. In addition, administration of TBTC (30mg/kg/day) in the transgenic APP-PS1 mice could also reduce the formation of senile plaques and improve the daily living activity of the mice. Therefore, our findings have suggested that TBTC might hold the potential as a drug lead compound for the treatment of AD.

  12. Modeling of human prokineticin receptors: interactions with novel small-molecule binders and potential off-target drugs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anat Levit

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND AND MOTIVATION: The Prokineticin receptor (PKR 1 and 2 subtypes are novel members of family A GPCRs, which exhibit an unusually high degree of sequence similarity. Prokineticins (PKs, their cognate ligands, are small secreted proteins of ∼80 amino acids; however, non-peptidic low-molecular weight antagonists have also been identified. PKs and their receptors play important roles under various physiological conditions such as maintaining circadian rhythm and pain perception, as well as regulating angiogenesis and modulating immunity. Identifying binding sites for known antagonists and for additional potential binders will facilitate studying and regulating these novel receptors. Blocking PKRs may serve as a therapeutic tool for various diseases, including acute pain, inflammation and cancer. METHODS AND RESULTS: Ligand-based pharmacophore models were derived from known antagonists, and virtual screening performed on the DrugBank dataset identified potential human PKR (hPKR ligands with novel scaffolds. Interestingly, these included several HIV protease inhibitors for which endothelial cell dysfunction is a documented side effect. Our results suggest that the side effects might be due to inhibition of the PKR signaling pathway. Docking of known binders to a 3D homology model of hPKR1 is in agreement with the well-established canonical TM-bundle binding site of family A GPCRs. Furthermore, the docking results highlight residues that may form specific contacts with the ligands. These contacts provide structural explanation for the importance of several chemical features that were obtained from the structure-activity analysis of known binders. With the exception of a single loop residue that might be perused in the future for obtaining subtype-specific regulation, the results suggest an identical TM-bundle binding site for hPKR1 and hPKR2. In addition, analysis of the intracellular regions highlights variable regions that may provide

  13. Chemokines: Small Molecules Participate in Diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Mostafa Hosseini-Zijoud


    Full Text Available Background: Chemokines are small protein molecules involved in cell signaling processes. They play a crucial role in many physiological and pathological processes. Chemokines are functionally classified into two categories; inflammatory/inducible and constitutive. Their biologic functional differences are the result of their receptors structural differences. Recently some studies were performed about the chemokines changes in diabetes. Inflammatory mechanisms have an important role in diabetes.Materials and Methods: In this review article we searched the keywords chemokines, diabetes, diabetes pathogenesis, and type 1 and 2 diabetes in Persian resources, PubMed and famous English-language websites through advanced search engines and found the newest studies about the role of chemokines in the pathogenesis of diabetes.Results: The results of the studies showed that diabetes and its disorders enhance the activation of immune cells and the expression of cytokines such as IL-1, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, SDF-1, INF-γ, TGF-β, MCP-1, IP-10, TNF-α, and RANTES; most of them have impact on the pathogenesis of diabetes.Conclusion: Comparison and analysis of the results obtained from our research and the results of performed studies in the world and Iran shows that chemokines, like other protein molecules involved in the pathogenesis and etiology of diabetes, play a role in this process.

  14. Targeting Mycobacterium tuberculosis topoisomerase I by small-molecule inhibitors. (United States)

    Godbole, Adwait Anand; Ahmed, Wareed; Bhat, Rajeshwari Subray; Bradley, Erin K; Ekins, Sean; Nagaraja, Valakunja


    We describe inhibition of Mycobacterium tuberculosis topoisomerase I (MttopoI), an essential mycobacterial enzyme, by two related compounds, imipramine and norclomipramine, of which imipramine is clinically used as an antidepressant. These molecules showed growth inhibition of both Mycobacterium smegmatis and M. tuberculosis cells. The mechanism of action of these two molecules was investigated by analyzing the individual steps of the topoisomerase I (topoI) reaction cycle. The compounds stimulated cleavage, thereby perturbing the cleavage-religation equilibrium. Consequently, these molecules inhibited the growth of the cells overexpressing topoI at a low MIC. Docking of the molecules on the MttopoI model suggested that they bind near the metal binding site of the enzyme. The DNA relaxation activity of the metal binding mutants harboring mutations in the DxDxE motif was differentially affected by the molecules, suggesting that the metal coordinating residues contribute to the interaction of the enzyme with the drug. Taken together, the results highlight the potential of these small molecules, which poison the M. tuberculosis and M. smegmatis topoisomerase I, as leads for the development of improved molecules to combat mycobacterial infections. Moreover, targeting metal coordination in topoisomerases might be a general strategy to develop new lead molecules.

  15. Interfacial processes in small molecule organic solar cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    This paper presents an overview of the recent progress of small molecule organic solar cells mainly based on the previous worksof our group. We will mainly focus on the interfacial processes in the cells. The dissociation of excitons at electrode/organic andorganic/organic interfaces can be directly observed by transient photovoltage measurements. A simple model including dissociationof excitons at the interface and drift of free carriers in the built-in field is proposed to explain the observed signals of transientphotovoltage. Besides exciton-blocking and preventing damage due to cathode evaporation,blocking permeation of oxygen and/orwater molecules and modulating the built-in field are proposed as functions of the buffer layer between C60 and Al. By the use ofthe inverted structure,a shelf lifetime of over 1500 h is achieved for unencapsulated small-molecule organic solar cells.

  16. Small Organic Molecules for Direct Aldol Reaction

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    TANG Zhuo; GONG Liu-Zhu; MI Ai-Qiao; JIANG Yao-Zhong


    Since the pioneering finding by List and Barbas Ⅲ and their coworkers that L-proline could work as a catalyst in the intermolecular direct aldol reaction, the concept of small organic molecules as catalysts has received great attention. However, new organic molecule which have better catalysis ability are reported scarcely.Our groups1 found L-Prolinamides 1 to be active catalysts for the direct aldol reaction of 4-nitrobenaldehyde with neat acetone at room temperature. The enantioselectivity increases as the amide N-H becomes more acidic and thus a better hydrogen bond donor. Introducing another proton donor, hydroxyl, in the catalyst lead to a further improvement in the catalytic enantioselectivity.The calculations reveal that the amide N-H and the terminal hydroxyl groups form hydrogen bonds with the benzaldehyde substrate. These hydrogen bonds reduce the activation energy and cause high enantioselectivity.Catalyst 2, prepared from L-proline and (1S, 2S)-diphenyl-2-aminoethanol, exhibits high enantioselectivities of up to 93% ee for aromatic aldehydes and up to >99% ee for aliphatic aldehydes. It is noteworthy that our results refuted the conventional wisdom that the carboxylic acid group of proline is a reqirement for high enatioselectivity and provide a powerful strategy in the molecular design of new organic catalyst because plentiful chiral resource containing multi-hydrogen bonding donor, for example, peptides.Very recently, we found that L-proline-based peptides 3-7 can catalyze the aldol reactions of hydroxyacetone with aldehydes 8 in aqueous media, to give 1,4-diols 9, the disfavored products with either aldolase or L-proline. Both peptides 5 and 6 give good results.The abilities of peptides 5 and 6 to catalyze the direct aldol reactions of hydroxyacetone with avariety of aldehydes were examined under optimal conditions. The results are shown in table. Highyields and entioselectivities of up to 96% ee were observed for aromatic aldehydes

  17. Design of a small molecule against an oncogenic noncoding RNA. (United States)

    Velagapudi, Sai Pradeep; Cameron, Michael D; Haga, Christopher L; Rosenberg, Laura H; Lafitte, Marie; Duckett, Derek R; Phinney, Donald G; Disney, Matthew D


    The design of precision, preclinical therapeutics from sequence is difficult, but advances in this area, particularly those focused on rational design, could quickly transform the sequence of disease-causing gene products into lead modalities. Herein, we describe the use of Inforna, a computational approach that enables the rational design of small molecules targeting RNA to quickly provide a potent modulator of oncogenic microRNA-96 (miR-96). We mined the secondary structure of primary microRNA-96 (pri-miR-96) hairpin precursor against a database of RNA motif-small molecule interactions, which identified modules that bound RNA motifs nearby and in the Drosha processing site. Precise linking of these modules together provided Targaprimir-96 (3), which selectively modulates miR-96 production in cancer cells and triggers apoptosis. Importantly, the compound is ineffective on healthy breast cells, and exogenous overexpression of pri-miR-96 reduced compound potency in breast cancer cells. Chemical Cross-Linking and Isolation by Pull-Down (Chem-CLIP), a small-molecule RNA target validation approach, shows that 3 directly engages pri-miR-96 in breast cancer cells. In vivo, 3 has a favorable pharmacokinetic profile and decreases tumor burden in a mouse model of triple-negative breast cancer. Thus, rational design can quickly produce precision, in vivo bioactive lead small molecules against hard-to-treat cancers by targeting oncogenic noncoding RNAs, advancing a disease-to-gene-to-drug paradigm.

  18. Small Molecule PET Tracers in Drug Discovery. (United States)

    Donnelly, David J


    The process of discovering and developing a new pharmaceutical is a long, difficult, and risky process that requires numerous resources. Molecular imaging techniques such as PET have recently become a useful tool for making decisions along a drug candidate's development timeline. PET is a translational, noninvasive imaging technique that provides quantitative information about a potential drug candidate and its target at the molecular level. Using this technique provides decisional information to ensure that the right drug candidate is being chosen, for the right target, at the right dose within the right patient population. This review will focus on small molecule PET tracers and how they are used within the drug discovery process. PET provides key information about a drug candidate's pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties in both preclinical and clinical studies. PET is being used in all phases of the drug discovery and development process, and the goal of these studies are to accelerate the process in which drugs are developed. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  19. Small-molecule TrkB receptor agonists improve motor function and extend survival in a mouse model of Huntington's disease. (United States)

    Jiang, Mali; Peng, Qi; Liu, Xia; Jin, Jing; Hou, Zhipeng; Zhang, Jiangyang; Mori, Susumu; Ross, Christopher A; Ye, Keqiang; Duan, Wenzhen


    Huntington's disease (HD) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by abnormal motor coordination, cognitive decline and psychiatric disorders. This disease is caused by an expanded CAG trinucleotide repeat in the gene encoding the protein huntingtin. Reduced levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the brain, which results from transcriptional inhibition and axonal transport deficits mediated by mutant huntingtin, have been suggested as critical factors underlying selective neurodegeneration in both HD patients and HD mouse models. BDNF activates its high-affinity receptor TrkB and promotes neuronal survival; restoring BDNF signaling is thus of particular therapeutic interest. In the present study, we evaluated the ability of a small-molecule TrkB agonist 7,8-dihydroxyflavone (7,8-DHF) and its synthetic derivative 4'-dimethylamino-7,8- dihydroxyflavone (4'-DMA-7,8-DHF) to protect neurons in the well-characterized N171-82Q HD mouse model. We found that chronic administration of 7, 8-DHF (5 mg/kg) or 4'-DMA-7,8-DHF (1 mg/kg) significantly improved motor deficits, ameliorated brain atrophy and extended survival in these N171-82Q HD mice. Moreover, 4'-DMA-7,8-DHF preserved DARPP32 levels in the striatum and rescued mutant huntingtin-induced impairment of neurogenesis in the N171-82Q HD mice. These data highlight consideration of TrkB as a therapeutic target in HD and suggest that small-molecule TrkB agonists that penetrate the brain have high potential to be further tested in clinical trials of HD.

  20. At-line determination of pharmaceuticals small molecule's blending end point using chemometric modeling combined with Fourier transform near infrared spectroscopy (United States)

    Tewari, Jagdish; Strong, Richard; Boulas, Pierre


    This article summarizes the development and validation of a Fourier transform near infrared spectroscopy (FT-NIR) method for the rapid at-line prediction of active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) in a powder blend to optimize small molecule formulations. The method was used to determine the blend uniformity end-point for a pharmaceutical solid dosage formulation containing a range of API concentrations. A set of calibration spectra from samples with concentrations ranging from 1% to 15% of API (w/w) were collected at-line from 4000 to 12,500 cm- 1. The ability of the FT-NIR method to predict API concentration in the blend samples was validated against a reference high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method. The prediction efficiency of four different types of multivariate data modeling methods such as partial least-squares 1 (PLS1), partial least-squares 2 (PLS2), principal component regression (PCR) and artificial neural network (ANN), were compared using relevant multivariate figures of merit. The prediction ability of the regression models were cross validated against results generated with the reference HPLC method. PLS1 and ANN showed excellent and superior prediction abilities when compared to PLS2 and PCR. Based upon these results and because of its decreased complexity compared to ANN, PLS1 was selected as the best chemometric method to predict blend uniformity at-line. The FT-NIR measurement and the associated chemometric analysis were implemented in the production environment for rapid at-line determination of the end-point of the small molecule blending operation.

  1. Facilities for small-molecule crystallography at synchrotron sources. (United States)

    Barnett, Sarah A; Nowell, Harriott; Warren, Mark R; Wilcox, Andrian; Allan, David R


    Although macromolecular crystallography is a widely supported technique at synchrotron radiation facilities throughout the world, there are, in comparison, only very few beamlines dedicated to small-molecule crystallography. This limited provision is despite the increasing demand for beamtime from the chemical crystallography community and the ever greater overlap between systems that can be classed as either small macromolecules or large small molecules. In this article, a very brief overview of beamlines that support small-molecule single-crystal diffraction techniques will be given along with a more detailed description of beamline I19, a dedicated facility for small-molecule crystallography at Diamond Light Source.

  2. Small Molecule PET Tracers for Transporter Imaging. (United States)

    Kilbourn, Michael R


    As the field of PET has expanded and an ever-increasing number and variety of compounds have been radiolabeled as potential in vivo tracers of biochemistry, transporters have become important primary targets or facilitators of radiotracer uptake and distribution. A transporter can be the primary target through the development of a specific high-affinity radioligand: examples are the multiple high-affinity radioligands for the neuronal membrane neurotransmitter or vesicular transporters, used to image nerve terminals in the brain. The goal of a radiotracer might be to study the function of a transporter through the use of a radiolabeled substrate, such as the application of 3-O-[(11)C]methyl]glucose to measure rates of glucose transport through the blood-brain barrier. In many cases, transporters are required for radiotracer distributions, but the targeted biochemistries might be unrelated: an example is the use of 2-deoxy-2-[(18)F]FDG for imaging glucose metabolism, where initial passage of the radiotracer through cell membranes requires the action of specific glucose transporters. Finally, there are transporters such as p-glycoprotein that function to extrude small molecules from tissues, and can effectively work against successful uptake of radiotracers. The diversity of structures and functions of transporters, their importance in human health and disease, and their role in therapeutic drug disposition suggest that in vivo imaging of transporter location and function will continue to be a point of emphasis in PET radiopharmaceutical development. In this review, the variety of transporters and their importance for in vivo PET radiotracer development and application are discussed. Transporters have thus joined the other major protein targets such as G-protein coupled receptors, ligand-gated ion channels, enzymes, and aggregated proteins as of high interest for understanding human health and disease. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Identification of small molecule lead compounds for visceral leishmaniasis using a novel ex vivo splenic explant model system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaneth Osorio

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: New drugs are needed to treat visceral leishmaniasis (VL because the current therapies are toxic, expensive, and parasite resistance may weaken drug efficacy. We established a novel ex vivo splenic explant culture system from hamsters infected with luciferase-transfected Leishmania donovani to screen chemical compounds for anti-leishmanial activity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: THIS MODEL HAS ADVANTAGES OVER IN VITRO SYSTEMS IN THAT IT: 1 includes the whole cellular population involved in the host-parasite interaction; 2 is initiated at a stage of infection when the immunosuppressive mechanisms that lead to progressive VL are evident; 3 involves the intracellular form of Leishmania; 4 supports parasite replication that can be easily quantified by detection of parasite-expressed luciferase; 5 is adaptable to a high-throughput screening format; and 6 can be used to identify compounds that have both direct and indirect anti-parasitic activity. The assay showed excellent discrimination between positive (amphotericin B and negative (vehicle controls with a Z' Factor >0.8. A duplicate screen of 4 chemical libraries containing 4,035 compounds identified 202 hits (5.0% with a Z score of <-1.96 (p<0.05. Eighty-four (2.1% of the hits were classified as lead compounds based on the in vitro therapeutic index (ratio of the compound concentration causing 50% cytotoxicity in the HepG(2 cell line to the concentration that caused 50% reduction in the parasite load. Sixty-nine (82% of the lead compounds were previously unknown to have anti-leishmanial activity. The most frequently identified lead compounds were classified as quinoline-containing compounds (14%, alkaloids (10%, aromatics (11%, terpenes (8%, phenothiazines (7% and furans (5%. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The ex vivo splenic explant model provides a powerful approach to identify new compounds active against L. donovani within the pathophysiologic environment of the infected spleen

  4. Device characterization and optimization of small molecule organic solar cells assisted by modelling simulation of the current-voltage characteristics. (United States)

    Zuo, Yi; Wan, Xiangjian; Long, Guankui; Kan, Bin; Ni, Wang; Zhang, Hongtao; Chen, Yongsheng


    In order to understand the photovoltaic performance differences between the recently reported DR3TBTT-HD and DR3TBDT2T based solar cells, a modified two-diode model with Hecht equation was built to simulate the corresponding current-voltage characteristics. The simulation results reveal that the poor device performance of the DR3TBDTT-HD based device mainly originated from its insufficient charge transport ability, where an average current of 5.79 mA cm(-2) was lost through this pathway at the maximum power point for the DR3TBDTT-HD device, nearly three times as large as that of the DR3TBDT2T based device under the same device fabrication conditions. The morphology studies support these simulation results, in which both Raman and 2D-GIXD data reveal that DR3TBTT-HD based blend films exhibit lower crystallinity. Spin coating at low temperature was used to increase the crystallinity of DR3TBDTT-HD based blend films, and the average current loss through insufficient charge transport at maximum power point was suppressed to 2.08 mA cm(-2). As a result, the average experimental power conversion efficiency of DR3TBDTT-HD based solar cells increased by over 40%.

  5. Quantitative structure-retention relationships models for prediction of high performance liquid chromatography retention time of small molecules: endogenous metabolites and banned compounds. (United States)

    Goryński, Krzysztof; Bojko, Barbara; Nowaczyk, Alicja; Buciński, Adam; Pawliszyn, Janusz; Kaliszan, Roman


    Quantitative structure-retention relationship (QSRR) is a technique capable of improving the identification of analytes by predicting their retention time on a liquid chromatography column (LC) and/or their properties. This approach is particularly useful when LC is coupled with a high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS) platform. The main aim of the present study was to develop and describe appropriate QSRR models that provide usable predictive capability, allowing false positive identification to be removed during the interpretation of metabolomics data, while additionally increasing confidence of experimental results in doping control area. For this purpose, a dataset consisting of 146 drugs, metabolites and banned compounds from World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) lists, was used. A QSRR study was carried out separately on high quality retention data determined by reversed-phase (RP-LC-HRMS) and hydrophilic interaction chromatography (HILIC-LC-HRMS) systems, employing a single protocol for each system. Multiple linear regression (MLR) was applied to construct the linear QSRR models based on a variety of theoretical molecular descriptors. The regression equations included a set of three descriptors for each model: ALogP, BELe6, R2p and ALogP(2), FDI, BLTA96, were used in the analysis of reversed-phase and HILIC column models, respectively. Statistically significant QSRR models (squared correlation coefficient for model fitting, R(2)=0.95 for RP and R(2)=0.84 for HILIC) indicate a strong correlation between retention time and the molecular descriptors. An evaluation of the best correlation models, performed by validation of each model using three tests (leave-one-out, leave-many-out, external tests), demonstrated the reliability of the models. This paper provides a practical and effective method for analytical chemists working with LC/HRMS platforms to improve predictive confidence of studies that seek to identify small molecules.

  6. Domain-based small molecule binding site annotation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dumontier Michel


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Accurate small molecule binding site information for a protein can facilitate studies in drug docking, drug discovery and function prediction, but small molecule binding site protein sequence annotation is sparse. The Small Molecule Interaction Database (SMID, a database of protein domain-small molecule interactions, was created using structural data from the Protein Data Bank (PDB. More importantly it provides a means to predict small molecule binding sites on proteins with a known or unknown structure and unlike prior approaches, removes large numbers of false positive hits arising from transitive alignment errors, non-biologically significant small molecules and crystallographic conditions that overpredict ion binding sites. Description Using a set of co-crystallized protein-small molecule structures as a starting point, SMID interactions were generated by identifying protein domains that bind to small molecules, using NCBI's Reverse Position Specific BLAST (RPS-BLAST algorithm. SMID records are available for viewing at The SMID-BLAST tool provides accurate transitive annotation of small-molecule binding sites for proteins not found in the PDB. Given a protein sequence, SMID-BLAST identifies domains using RPS-BLAST and then lists potential small molecule ligands based on SMID records, as well as their aligned binding sites. A heuristic ligand score is calculated based on E-value, ligand residue identity and domain entropy to assign a level of confidence to hits found. SMID-BLAST predictions were validated against a set of 793 experimental small molecule interactions from the PDB, of which 472 (60% of predicted interactions identically matched the experimental small molecule and of these, 344 had greater than 80% of the binding site residues correctly identified. Further, we estimate that 45% of predictions which were not observed in the PDB validation set may be true positives. Conclusion By

  7. Allosteric small-molecule kinase inhibitors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wu, Peng; Clausen, Mads Hartvig; Nielsen, Thomas E.


    -molecule allosteric inhibitor trametinib in 2013, the progress of more than 10 other allosteric inhibitors in clinical trials, and the emergence of a pipeline of highly selective and potent preclinical molecules, have been reported in the past decade. In this article, we present the current knowledge on allosteric...... inhibition in terms of conception, classification, potential advantages, and summarized debatable topics in the field. Recent progress and allosteric inhibitors that were identified in the past three years are highlighted in this paper....

  8. MLN0905, a small-molecule plk1 inhibitor, induces antitumor responses in human models of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. (United States)

    Shi, Judy Quiju; Lasky, Kerri; Shinde, Vaishali; Stringer, Bradley; Qian, Mark G; Liao, Debra; Liu, Ray; Driscoll, Denise; Nestor, Michelle Tighe; Amidon, Benjamin S; Rao, Youlan; Duffey, Matt O; Manfredi, Mark G; Vos, Tricia J; D' Amore, Natalie; Hyer, Marc L


    Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is the most common of the non-Hodgkin lymphomas, accounting for up to 30% of all newly diagnosed lymphoma cases. Current treatment options for this disease are effective, but not always curative; therefore, experimental therapies continue to be investigated. We have discovered an experimental, potent, and selective small-molecule inhibitor of PLK1, MLN0905, which inhibits cell proliferation in a broad range of human tumor cells including DLBCL cell lines. In our report, we explored the pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic, and antitumor properties of MLN0905 in DLBCL xenograft models grown in mice. These studies indicate that MLN0905 modulates the pharmacodynamic biomarker phosphorylated histone H3 (pHisH3) in tumor tissue. The antitumor activity of MLN0905 was evaluated in three human subcutaneous DLBCL xenograft models, OCI LY-10, OCI LY-19, and PHTX-22L (primary lymphoma). In each model, MLN0905 yielded significant antitumor activity on both a continuous (daily) and intermittent dosing schedule, underscoring dosing flexibility. The antitumor activity of MLN0905 was also evaluated in a disseminated xenograft (OCI LY-19) model to better mimic human DLBCL disease. In the disseminated model, MLN0905 induced a highly significant survival advantage. Finally, MLN0905 was combined with a standard-of-care agent, rituximab, in the disseminated OCI LY-19 xenograft model. Combining rituximab and MLN0905 provided both a synergistic antitumor effect and a synergistic survival advantage. Our findings indicate that PLK1 inhibition leads to pharmacodynamic pHisH3 modulation and significant antitumor activity in multiple DLBCL models. These data strongly suggest evaluating PLK1 inhibitors as DLBCL anticancer agents in the clinic. ©2012 AACR.

  9. Significant blockade of multiple receptor tyrosine kinases by MGCD516 (Sitravatinib), a novel small molecule inhibitor, shows potent anti-tumor activity in preclinical models of sarcoma. (United States)

    Patwardhan, Parag P; Ivy, Kathryn S; Musi, Elgilda; de Stanchina, Elisa; Schwartz, Gary K


    Sarcomas are rare but highly aggressive mesenchymal tumors with a median survival of 10-18 months for metastatic disease. Mutation and/or overexpression of many receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) including c-Met, PDGFR, c-Kit and IGF1-R drive defective signaling pathways in sarcomas. MGCD516 (Sitravatinib) is a novel small molecule inhibitor targeting multiple RTKs involved in driving sarcoma cell growth. In the present study, we evaluated the efficacy of MGCD516 both in vitro and in mouse xenograft models in vivo. MGCD516 treatment resulted in significant blockade of phosphorylation of potential driver RTKs and induced potent anti-proliferative effects in vitro. Furthermore, MGCD516 treatment of tumor xenografts in vivo resulted in significant suppression of tumor growth. Efficacy of MGCD516 was superior to imatinib and crizotinib, two other well-studied multi-kinase inhibitors with overlapping target specificities, both in vitro and in vivo. This is the first report describing MGCD516 as a potent multi-kinase inhibitor in different models of sarcoma, superior to imatinib and crizotinib. Results from this study showing blockade of multiple driver signaling pathways provides a rationale for further clinical development of MGCD516 for the treatment of patients with soft-tissue sarcoma.

  10. Fluorescence Emission from Small Molecules Containing Amino Group

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    After the treatment of oxygen gas, the small molecules containing amine group could emit fluorescence. Oxidation was believed to play an important role in the formation of fluorescence centers. Compared to previous results, both small molecules and macromolecules might have the same fluorescence centers.

  11. Torsional sensing of small-molecule binding using magnetic tweezers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lipfert, J.; Klijnhout, S.; Dekker, N.H.


    DNA-binding small molecules are widespread in the cell and heavily used in biological applications. Here, we use magnetic tweezers, which control the force and torque applied to single DNAs, to study three small molecules: ethidium bromide (EtBr), a well-known intercalator; netropsin, a minor-groove

  12. Bacterial toxins and small molecules elucidate endosomal trafficking. (United States)

    Slater, Louise H; Clatworthy, Anne E; Hung, Deborah T


    Bacterial toxins and small molecules are useful tools for studying eukaryotic cell biology. In a recent issue of PNAS, Gillespie and colleagues describe a novel small molecule inhibitor of bacterial toxins and virus trafficking through the endocytic pathway, 4-bromobenzaldehyde N-(2,6-dimethylphenyl)semicarbazone (EGA), that prevents transport from early to late endosomes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Bioinspired assembly of small molecules in cell milieu. (United States)

    Wang, Huaimin; Feng, Zhaoqianqi; Xu, Bing


    Self-assembly, the autonomous organization of components to form patterns or structures, is a prevalent process in nature at all scales. Particularly, biological systems offer remarkable examples of diverse structures (as well as building blocks) and processes resulting from self-assembly. The exploration of bioinspired assemblies not only allows for mimicking the structures of living systems, but it also leads to functions for applications in different fields that benefit humans. In the last several decades, efforts on understanding and controlling self-assembly of small molecules have produced a large library of candidates for developing the biomedical applications of assemblies of small molecules. Moreover, recent findings in biology have provided new insights on the assemblies of small molecules to modulate essential cellular processes (such as apoptosis). These observations indicate that the self-assembly of small molecules, as multifaceted entities and processes to interact with multiple proteins, can have profound biological impacts on cells. In this review, we illustrate that the generation of assemblies of small molecules in cell milieu with their interactions with multiple cellular proteins for regulating cellular processes can result in primary phenotypes, thus providing a fundamentally new molecular approach for controlling cell behavior. By discussing the correlation between molecular assemblies in nature and the assemblies of small molecules in cell milieu, illustrating the functions of the assemblies of small molecules, and summarizing some guiding principles, we hope this review will stimulate more molecular scientists to explore the bioinspired self-assembly of small molecules in cell milieu.

  14. Allosteric small-molecule kinase inhibitors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wu, Peng; Clausen, Mads Hartvig; Nielsen, Thomas E.


    current barriers of kinase inhibitors, including poor selectivity and emergence of drug resistance. In spite of the small number of identified allosteric inhibitors in comparison with that of inhibitors targeting the ATP pocket, encouraging results, such as the FDA-approval of the first small...

  15. Small Talk: Children's Everyday `Molecule' Ideas (United States)

    Jakab, Cheryl


    This paper reports on 6-11-year-old children's `sayings and doings' (Harré 2002) as they explore molecule artefacts in dialectical-interactive teaching interviews (Fleer, Cultural Studies of Science Education 3:781-786, 2008; Hedegaard et al. 2008). This sociocultural study was designed to explore children's everyday awareness of and meaning-making with cultural molecular artefacts. Our everyday world is populated with an ever increasing range of molecular or nanoworld words, symbols, images, and games. What do children today say about these artefacts that are used to represent molecular world entities? What are the material and social resources that can influence a child's everyday and developing scientific ideas about `molecules'? How do children interact with these cognitive tools when given expert assistance? What meaning-making is afforded when children are socially and materially assisted in using molecular tools in early chemical and nanoworld thinking? Tool-dependent discursive studies show that provision of cultural artefacts can assist and direct developmental thinking across many domains of science (Schoultz et al., Human Development 44:103-118, 2001; Siegal 2008). Young children's use of molecular artefacts as cognitive tools has not received much attention to date (Jakab 2009a, b). This study shows 6-11-year-old children expressing everyday ideas of molecular artefacts and raising their own questions about the artefacts. They are seen beginning to domesticate (Erneling 2010) the words, symbols, and images to their own purposes when given the opportunity to interact with such artefacts in supported activity. Discursive analysis supports the notion that using `molecules' as cultural tools can help young children to begin `putting on molecular spectacles' (Kind 2004). Playing with an interactive game (ICT) is shown to be particularly helpful in assisting children's early meaning-making with representations of molecules, atoms, and their chemical symbols.

  16. Highly parallel translation of DNA sequences into small molecules.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca M Weisinger

    Full Text Available A large body of in vitro evolution work establishes the utility of biopolymer libraries comprising 10(10 to 10(15 distinct molecules for the discovery of nanomolar-affinity ligands to proteins. Small-molecule libraries of comparable complexity will likely provide nanomolar-affinity small-molecule ligands. Unlike biopolymers, small molecules can offer the advantages of cell permeability, low immunogenicity, metabolic stability, rapid diffusion and inexpensive mass production. It is thought that such desirable in vivo behavior is correlated with the physical properties of small molecules, specifically a limited number of hydrogen bond donors and acceptors, a defined range of hydrophobicity, and most importantly, molecular weights less than 500 Daltons. Creating a collection of 10(10 to 10(15 small molecules that meet these criteria requires the use of hundreds to thousands of diversity elements per step in a combinatorial synthesis of three to five steps. With this goal in mind, we have reported a set of mesofluidic devices that enable DNA-programmed combinatorial chemistry in a highly parallel 384-well plate format. Here, we demonstrate that these devices can translate DNA genes encoding 384 diversity elements per coding position into corresponding small-molecule gene products. This robust and efficient procedure yields small molecule-DNA conjugates suitable for in vitro evolution experiments.

  17. GNX-4728, a Novel Small Molecule Drug Inhibitor of Mitochondrial Permeability Transition, is Therapeutic in a Mouse Model of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee J Martin


    Full Text Available Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS is a fatal neurological disorder in humans characterized by progressive degeneration of skeletal muscle and motor neurons in spinal cord, brainstem, and cerebral cortex causing skeletal muscle paralysis, respiratory insufficiency, and death. There are no cures or effective treatments for ALS. ALS can be inherited, but most cases are not associated with a family history of the disease. Mitochondria have been implicated in the pathogenesis but definitive proof of causal mechanisms is lacking. Identification of new clinically translatable disease mechanism-based molecular targets and small molecule drug candidates are needed for ALS patients. We tested the hypothesis in an animal model that drug modulation of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP is therapeutic in ALS. A prospective randomized placebo-controlled drug trial was done in a transgenic mouse model of ALS. We explored GNX-4728 as a therapeutic drug. GNX-4728 inhibits mPTP opening as evidenced by increased mitochondrial calcium retention capacity both in vitro and in vivo. Chronic systemic treatment of G37R-human mutant superoxide dismutase-1 (hSOD1 transgenic mice with GNX-4728 resulted in major therapeutic benefits. GNX-4728 slowed disease progression and significantly improved motor function. The survival of ALS mice was increased significantly by GNX-4728 treatment as evidence by a nearly 2-fold extension of lifespan (360 days to 750 days. GNX-4728 protected against motor neuron degeneration and mitochondrial degeneration, attenuated spinal cord inflammation, and preserved neuromuscular junction innervation in the diaphragm in ALS mice. This work demonstrates that a mPTP-acting drug has major disease-modifying efficacy in a preclinical mouse model of ALS and establishes mitochondrial calcium retention, and indirectly the mPTP, as targets for ALS drug development.

  18. NMR study of small molecule adsorption in MOF-74-Mg. (United States)

    Lopez, M G; Canepa, Pieremanuele; Thonhauser, T


    We calculate the carbon nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) shielding for CO2 and the hydrogen shieldings for both H2 and H2O inside the metal organic framework MOF-74-Mg. Our ab initio calculations are at the density functional theory level using the van der Waals including density functional vdW-DF. The shieldings are obtained while placing the small molecules throughout the structure, including the calculated adsorption site for various loading scenarios. We then explore relationships between loading, rotational and positional characteristics, and the NMR shieldings for each adsorbate. Our NMR calculations show a change in the shielding depending on adsorbate, position, and loading in a range that is experimentally observable. We further provide a simple model for the energy and the NMR shieldings throughout the cavity of the MOF. By providing this mapping of shielding to position and loading for these adsorbates, we argue that NMR probes could be used to provide additional information about the position at which these small molecules bind within the MOF, as well as the loading of the adsorbed molecule.

  19. NMR study of small molecule adsorption in MOF-74-Mg (United States)

    Lopez, M. G.; Canepa, Pieremanuele; Thonhauser, T.


    We calculate the carbon nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) shielding for CO2 and the hydrogen shieldings for both H2 and H2O inside the metal organic framework MOF-74-Mg. Our ab initio calculations are at the density functional theory level using the van der Waals including density functional vdW-DF. The shieldings are obtained while placing the small molecules throughout the structure, including the calculated adsorption site for various loading scenarios. We then explore relationships between loading, rotational and positional characteristics, and the NMR shieldings for each adsorbate. Our NMR calculations show a change in the shielding depending on adsorbate, position, and loading in a range that is experimentally observable. We further provide a simple model for the energy and the NMR shieldings throughout the cavity of the MOF. By providing this mapping of shielding to position and loading for these adsorbates, we argue that NMR probes could be used to provide additional information about the position at which these small molecules bind within the MOF, as well as the loading of the adsorbed molecule.

  20. Proteinlike copolymers as encapsulating agents for small-molecule solutes. (United States)

    Malik, Ravish; Genzer, Jan; Hall, Carol K


    We describe the utilization of proteinlike copolymers (PLCs) as encapsulating agents for small-molecule solutes. We perform Monte Carlo simulations on systems containing PLCs and model solute molecules in order to understand how PLCs assemble in solution and what system conditions promote solute encapsulation. Specifically, we explore how the chemical composition of the PLCs and the range and strength of molecular interactions between hydrophobic segments on the PLC and solute molecules affect the solute encapsulation efficiency. The composition profiles of the hydrophobic and hydrophilic segments, the solute, and implicit solvent (or voids) within the PLC globule are evaluated to gain a complete understanding of the behavior in the PLC/solute system. We find that a single-chain PLC encapsulates solute successfully by collapsing the macromolecule to a well-defined globular conformation when the hydrophobic/solute interaction is at least as strong as the interaction strength among hydrophobic segments and the interaction among solute molecules is at most as strong as the hydrophobic/solute interaction strength. Our results can be used by experimentalists as a framework for optimizing unimolecular PLC solute encapsulation and can be extended potentially to applications such as "drug" delivery via PLCs.

  1. Phase-transfer energetics of small-molecule alcohols across the water-hexane interface: molecular dynamics simulations using charge equilibration models. (United States)

    Bauer, Brad A; Zhong, Yang; Meninger, David J; Davis, Joseph E; Patel, Sandeep


    We study the water-hexane interface using molecular dynamics (MD) and polarizable charge equilibration (CHEQ) force fields. Bulk densities for TIP4P-FQ water and hexane, 1.0086±0.0002 and 0.6378±0.0001 g/cm(3), demonstrate excellent agreement with experiment. Interfacial width and interfacial tension are consistent with previously reported values. The in-plane component of the dielectric permittivity (ɛ(||)) for water is shown to decrease from 81.7±0.04 to unity, transitioning longitudinally from bulk water to bulk hexane. ɛ(||) for hexane reaches a maximum in the interface, but this term represents only a small contribution to the total dielectric constant (as expected for a non-polar species). Structurally, net orientations of the molecules arise in the interfacial region such that hexane lies slightly parallel to the interface and water reorients to maximize hydrogen bonding. Interfacial potentials due to contributions of the water and hexane are calculated to be -567.9±0.13 and 198.7±0.01 mV, respectively, giving rise to a total potential in agreement with the range of values reported from previous simulations of similar systems. Potentials of mean force (PMF) calculated for methanol, ethanol, and 1-propanol for the transfer from water to hexane indicate an interfacial free energy minimum, corresponding to the amphiphilic nature of the molecules. The magnitudes of transfer free energies were further characterized from the solvation free energies of alcohols in water and hexane using thermodynamic integration. This analysis shows that solvation free energies for alcohols in hexane are 0.2-0.3 kcal/mol too unfavorable, whereas solvation of alcohols in water is approximately 1 kcal/mol too favorable. For the pure hexane-water interfacial simulations, we observe a monotonic decrease of the water dipole moment to near-vacuum values. This suggests that the electrostatic component of the desolvation free energy is not as severe for polarizable models than for

  2. Small-Molecule Binding Aptamers: Selection Strategies, Characterization, and Applications (United States)

    Ruscito, Annamaria; DeRosa, Maria


    Aptamers are single-stranded, synthetic oligonucleotides that fold into 3-dimensional shapes capable of binding non-covalently with high affinity and specificity to a target molecule. They are generated via an in vitro process known as the Systematic Evolution of Ligands by EXponential enrichment, from which candidates are screened and characterized, and then applied in aptamer-based biosensors for target detection. Aptamers for small molecule targets such as toxins, antibiotics, molecular markers, drugs, and heavy metals will be the focus of this review. Their accurate detection is ultimately needed for the protection and wellbeing of humans and animals. However, issues such as the drastic difference in size of the aptamer and small molecule make it challenging to select, characterize, and apply aptamers for the detection of small molecules. Thus, recent (since 2012) notable advances in small molecule aptamers, which have overcome some of these challenges, are presented here, while defining challenges that still exist are discussed

  3. Small-Molecule Binding Aptamers: Selection Strategies, Characterization, and Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annamaria eRuscito


    Full Text Available Aptamers are single-stranded, synthetic oligonucleotides that fold into 3-dimensional shapes capable of binding non-covalently with high affinity and specificity to a target molecule. They are generated via an in vitro process known as the Systematic Evolution of Ligands by EXponential enrichment, from which candidates are screened and characterized, and then applied in aptamer-based biosensors for target detection. Aptamers for small molecule targets such as toxins, antibiotics, molecular markers, drugs, and heavy metals will be the focus of this review. Their accurate detection is ultimately needed for the protection and wellbeing of humans and animals. However, issues such as the drastic difference in size of the aptamer and small molecule make it challenging to select, characterize, and apply aptamers for the detection of small molecules. Thus, recent (since 2012 notable advances in small molecule aptamers, which have overcome some of these challenges, are presented here, while defining challenges that still exist are discussed

  4. Proteochemometric modelling coupled to in silico target prediction: an integrated approach for the simultaneous prediction of polypharmacology and binding affinity/potency of small molecules. (United States)

    Paricharak, Shardul; Cortés-Ciriano, Isidro; IJzerman, Adriaan P; Malliavin, Thérèse E; Bender, Andreas


    targets and the potency on plasmodial DHFR for the GSK TCAMS dataset, which comprises 13,533 compounds displaying strong anti-malarial activity. 534 of those compounds were identified as DHFR inhibitors by the target prediction algorithm, while the PCM algorithm identified 25 compounds, and 23 compounds (predicted pIC50 > 7) were identified by both methods. Overall, this integrated approach simultaneously provides target and potency/affinity predictions for small molecules. Graphical abstractProteochemometric modelling coupled to in silico target prediction.

  5. Plasmin Regulation through Allosteric, Sulfated, Small Molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rami A. Al-Horani


    Full Text Available Plasmin, a key serine protease, plays a major role in clot lysis and extracellular matrix remodeling. Heparin, a natural polydisperse sulfated glycosaminoglycan, is known to allosterically modulate plasmin activity. No small allosteric inhibitor of plasmin has been discovered to date. We screened an in-house library of 55 sulfated, small glycosaminoglycan mimetics based on nine distinct scaffolds and varying number and positions of sulfate groups to discover several promising hits. Of these, a pentasulfated flavonoid-quinazolinone dimer 32 was found to be the most potent sulfated small inhibitor of plasmin (IC50 = 45 μM, efficacy = 100%. Michaelis-Menten kinetic studies revealed an allosteric inhibition of plasmin by these inhibitors. Studies also indicated that the most potent inhibitors are selective for plasmin over thrombin and factor Xa, two serine proteases in coagulation cascade. Interestingly, different inhibitors exhibited different levels of efficacy (40%–100%, an observation alluding to the unique advantage offered by an allosteric process. Overall, our work presents the first small, synthetic allosteric plasmin inhibitors for further rational design.

  6. Application of a small molecule radiopharmaceutical concept to improve kinetics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jeong, Jae Min [Dept. of Nuclear Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)


    Recently, large molecules or nanoparticles are actively studied as radiopharmaceuticals. However, their kinetics is problematic because of a slow penetration through the capillaries and slow distribution to the target. To improve the kinetics, a two-step targeting method can be applied by using small molecules and very rapid copper-free click reaction. Although this method might have limitations such as internalization of the first targeted conjugate, it will provide high target-to-non-target ratio imaging of radiopharmaceuticals. The majority of radiopharmaceuticals belong to small molecules of which the molecular weight is less than 2000 Da, and the molecular size is smaller than 2 nm generally. The outstanding feature of the small molecule radiopharmaceuticals compared to large molecules is with their kinetics. Their distribution to target and clearance from non-target tissues are very rapid, which is the essential requirement of radiopharmaceuticals. In conclusion, the small molecule radiopharmaceuticals generally show excellent biodistribution properties; however, they show poor efficiency of radioisotope delivery. Large molecule or nanoparticle radiopharmaceuticals have advantages of multimodal and efficient delivery, but lower target-to-non-target ratio. Two-step targeting using a bio-orthogonal copper-free click reaction can be a solution of the problem of large molecule or nanoparticle radiopharmaceuticals. The majority of radiopharmaceuticals belong to small molecules of which the molecular weight is less than 2000 Da, and the molecular size is smaller than 2 nm generally. The outstanding feature of the small molecule radiopharmaceuticals compared to large molecules is with their kinetics. Their distribution to target and clearance from non-target tissues are very rapid, which is the essential requirement of radiopharmaceuticals.

  7. Phase Transition Induced by Small Molecules in Confined Copolymer Films

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHOU Ling


    We investigate the phase transition induced by small molecules in confined copolymer films by using density functional theory.It is found that the addition of small molecules can effectively promote the phase separation of copolymers.In a symmetric diblock copolymer film,the affinity and concentration of small molecules play an important role in the structure transjtions.The disordered-lamellar transitions lamellar-lamellar transitions and the re-entrant transitions of the same structures are observed.Our results have potential applications in the fabrication of new functional materials.

  8. Perspective: Accurate ro-vibrational calculations on small molecules

    CERN Document Server

    Tennyson, Jonathan


    In what has been described as the fourth age of Quantum Chemistry, variational nuclear motion programs are now routinely being used to obtain the vibration-rotation levels and corresponding wavefunctions of small molecules to the sort of high accuracy demanded by comparison with spectroscopy. In this perspective I will discuss the current state-of-the-art which, for example, shows that these calculations are increasingly competitive with measurements or, indeed, replacing them and thus becoming the primary source of data on key processes. To achieve this accuracy {\\it ab initio} requires consideration small effects, routinely ignored in standard calculations, such those due to quantum electrodynamics (QED). Variational calculations are being used to generate huge list of transitions which provide the input for models of radiative transport through hot atmospheres and to fill in or even replace measured transition intensities. Future prospects such as study of molecular states near dissociation, which can prov...

  9. ZL006, a small molecule inhibitor of PSD-95/nNOS interaction, does not induce antidepressant-like effects in two genetically predisposed rat models of depression and control animals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tillmann, Sandra; Pereira, Vitor Silva; Liebenberg, Nico


    been proposed. This disruption can be achieved using small molecule inhibitors such as ZL006, which has attracted attention as ischemic stroke therapy in rodents and has been proposed as a potential novel treatment for depression. Based on this, our aim was to translate these findings to animal models...

  10. Ballonet String Model of Molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gavril NIAC


    Full Text Available Strings of ballonets, modelling rows of orbitals, are assembled to molecule models by crossing them properly. The ballonets at the ends of the strings of 2, 3, 4 or 5 spheres represent bonding orbitals of hydrogen with other elements like C, N or O (the proton being inside the sphere, as well as nonbonding orbitals. The ballonets between them are modelling bonding orbitals among elements other than hydrogen - except the double bond in diborane, the atomic cores laying at the junction of two or more spheres.Advantages of elastic sphere models range from self-adjusting bond angles to resistance when closing cycles like cyclopropane or modeling double bonds.Examples comprise alkanes, including platonic hydrocarbons, ethene, acetylene, and some inorganic molecules.

  11. A small molecule TrkB ligand reduces motor impairment and neuropathology in R6/2 and BACHD mouse models of Huntington's disease. (United States)

    Simmons, Danielle A; Belichenko, Nadia P; Yang, Tao; Condon, Christina; Monbureau, Marie; Shamloo, Mehrdad; Jing, Deqiang; Massa, Stephen M; Longo, Frank M


    Loss of neurotrophic support in the striatum caused by reduced brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels plays a critical role in Huntington's disease (HD) pathogenesis. BDNF acts via TrkB and p75 neurotrophin receptors (NTR), and restoring its signaling is a prime target for HD therapeutics. Here we sought to determine whether a small molecule ligand, LM22A-4, specific for TrkB and without effects on p75(NTR), could alleviate HD-related pathology in R6/2 and BACHD mouse models of HD. LM22A-4 was administered to R6/2 mice once daily (5-6 d/week) from 4 to 11 weeks of age via intraperitoneal and intranasal routes simultaneously to maximize brain levels. The ligand reached levels in the R6/2 forebrain greater than the maximal neuroprotective dose in vitro and corrected deficits in activation of striatal TrkB and its key signaling intermediates AKT, PLCγ, and CREB. Ligand-induced TrkB activation was associated with a reduction in HD pathologies in the striatum including decreased DARPP-32 levels, neurite degeneration of parvalbumin-containing interneurons, inflammation, and intranuclear huntingtin aggregates. Aggregates were also reduced in the cortex. Notably, LM22A-4 prevented deficits in dendritic spine density of medium spiny neurons. Moreover, R6/2 mice given LM22A-4 demonstrated improved downward climbing and grip strength compared with those given vehicle, though these groups had comparable rotarod performances and survival times. In BACHD mice, long-term LM22A-4 treatment (6 months) produced similar ameliorative effects. These results support the hypothesis that targeted activation of TrkB inhibits HD-related degenerative mechanisms, including spine loss, and may provide a disease mechanism-directed therapy for HD and other neurodegenerative conditions.

  12. A Prospective Method to Guide Small Molecule Drug Design (United States)

    Johnson, Alan T.


    At present, small molecule drug design follows a retrospective path when considering what analogs are to be made around a current hit or lead molecule with the focus often on identifying a compound with higher intrinsic potency. What this approach overlooks is the simultaneous need to also improve the physicochemical (PC) and pharmacokinetic (PK)…

  13. Modulation of p53's transcriptional function by small molecules



    p53 tumour suppressor is a transcriptional factor which induces apoptosis or growth arrest in response to stress thus eliminating damaged cells. p53 function is frequently abrogated in tumours either via inactivation mutations in the TP53 gene or by elevated activity of p53 negative regulators HDM2 and HDMX. Therefore application of small molecules that reactivate p53 function is a promising strategy for anti-cancer therapy. In addition, small molecules can serve as valuable research tool to ...

  14. Biocatalysts and small molecule products from metagenomic studies. (United States)

    Iqbal, Hala A; Feng, Zhiyang; Brady, Sean F


    The vast majority of bacteria present in environmental samples have never been cultured and therefore have not been exploited for the ability to produce useful biocatalysts or collections of biocatalysts generating interesting small molecules. Metagenomic libraries constructed using DNA extracted directly from natural bacterial communities offer access to the genetic information present in the genomes of these as yet uncultured bacteria. This review highlights recent efforts to recover both discrete enzymes and small molecules from metagenomic libraries.

  15. A small molecule p75NTR ligand, LM11A-31, reverses cholinergic neurite dystrophy in Alzheimer's disease mouse models with mid- to late-stage disease progression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danielle A Simmons

    Full Text Available Degeneration of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons contributes significantly to the cognitive deficits associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD and has been attributed to aberrant signaling through the neurotrophin receptor p75 (p75NTR. Thus, modulating p75NTR signaling is considered a promising therapeutic strategy for AD. Accordingly, our laboratory has developed small molecule p75NTR ligands that increase survival signaling and inhibit amyloid-β-induced degenerative signaling in in vitro studies. Previous work found that a lead p75NTR ligand, LM11A-31, prevents degeneration of cholinergic neurites when given to an AD mouse model in the early stages of disease pathology. To extend its potential clinical applications, we sought to determine whether LM11A-31 could reverse cholinergic neurite atrophy when treatment begins in AD mouse models having mid- to late stages of pathology. Reversing pathology may have particular clinical relevance as most AD studies involve patients that are at an advanced pathological stage. In this study, LM11A-31 (50 or 75 mg/kg was administered orally to two AD mouse models, Thy-1 hAPPLond/Swe (APPL/S and Tg2576, at age ranges during which marked AD-like pathology manifests. In mid-stage male APPL/S mice, LM11A-31 administered for 3 months starting at 6-8 months of age prevented and/or reversed atrophy of basal forebrain cholinergic neurites and cortical dystrophic neurites. Importantly, a 1 month LM11A-31 treatment given to male APPL/S mice (12-13 months old with late-stage pathology reversed the degeneration of cholinergic neurites in basal forebrain, ameliorated cortical dystrophic neurites, and normalized increased basal forebrain levels of p75NTR. Similar results were seen in female Tg2576 mice. These findings suggest that LM11A-31 can reduce and/or reverse fundamental AD pathologies in late-stage AD mice. Thus, targeting p75NTR is a promising approach to reducing AD-related degenerative processes that have

  16. A novel small molecule, HK-156, inhibits lipopoly-saccharide-induced activation of NF-κB signaling and improves survival in mouse models of sepsis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jian-ping FANG; Yang LIU; Jie LI; Wen-feng LIAO; You-hong HU; Kan DING


    Aim:To characterize a small molecule compound HK-156 as a novel inhibitor of the nuclear factor KB (NF-KB) signaling pathway.Methods:THP-1 monocytes and HEK293/hTLR4A-MD2-CD14 cells were tested.HK-156 and compound 809,an HK-156 analogue,were synthesized.A luciferase assay was used to evaluate the transcriptional activity of NF-κB.The levels of cytokines were measured with cytokine arrays,ELISA and quantitative PCR.An electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA),immunofluor.escence,Western blot and mass spectrometry were used to investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying the actions of the agent.BALB/c mice chal lenged with lipopolysaccharide (LPS,15 mg/kg,ip) were used as a mouse experimental endotoxemia model.Results:In HEK293hTLR4/NF-κB-luc cells treated with LPS (1000 ng/mL),HK-156 inhibited the transcriptional activity of NF-κB in a concentration-dependent manner(IC50=6.54±0.37 μmol/L).Pretreatment of THP-1 monocytes with HK-156 (5,10 and 20 μmol/L)significantly inhibited LPS-induced release and production of TNF-α and IL-1β,attenuated LPS-induced translocation of NF-κB into the nucleus and its binding to DNA,and suppressed LPS-induced phosphorylation and degradation of IκBα,and phosphorylation of IKKβ and TGFβ-activated kinase (TAK1).Meanwhile,HK-156 (5,10 and 20 μmol/L) slightly suppressed LPS-induced activation of p38.The effect of HK-156 on LPS-induced activation of NF-κB signaling was dependent on thiol groups of cysteines in upstream proteins.In mouse models of sepsis,pre-injection of HK-156 (50 mg/kg,iv) significantly inhibited TNFα production and reduced the mortality caused by the lethal dose of LPS.Conclusion:HK-156 inhibits LPS-induced activation of NF-κB signaling by suppressing the phosphorylation of TAK1 in vitro,and exerts beneficial effects in a mouse sepsis model.HK 156 may therefore be a useful therapeutic agent for treating sepsis.

  17. LOX1 inhibition with small molecules

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gousiadou, Chryssoula; Kouskoumvekaki, Irene


    the attention as targets and great effort has been made for the discovery and design of suitable inhibitors, to which end both pharmacological and computational methods have been employed. In the present work, using pharmacophore modeling and docking, we attempt to elucidate the inhibition of LOX1 with a new...

  18. TMAO: A small molecule of great expectations. (United States)

    Ufnal, Marcin; Zadlo, Anna; Ostaszewski, Ryszard


    Trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) is a small organic compound whose concentration in blood increases after ingesting dietary l-carnitine and phosphatidylcholine. Recent clinical studies show a positive correlation between elevated plasma levels of TMAO and an increased risk for major adverse cardiovascular events defined as death, myocardial infarction, or stroke. Several experimental studies suggest a possible contribution of TMAO to the etiology of cardiovascular diseases by affecting lipid and hormonal homeostasis. On the other hand, TMAO-rich seafood, which is an important source of protein and vitamins in the Mediterranean diet, has been considered beneficial for the circulatory system. Although in humans TMAO is known mainly as a waste product of choline metabolism, a number of studies suggest an involvement of TMAO in important biological functions in numerous organisms, ranging from bacteria to mammals. For example, cells use TMAO to maintain cell volume under conditions of osmotic and hydrostatic pressure stresses. In this article, we reviewed well-established chemical and biological properties of TMAO and dietary sources of TMAO, as well as looked at the studies suggesting possible involvement of TMAO in the etiology of cardiovascular and other diseases, such as kidney failure, diabetes, and cancer.

  19. Terminal protection of small molecule-linked ssDNA-SWNT nanoassembly for sensitive detection of small molecule and protein interaction

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yu Wang; Dian-Ming Zhou; Zhan Wu; Li-Juan Tang; Jian-Hui Jiang


    The interactions between small molecules and proteins constitute a critical regulatory mechanism in many fundamental biological processes.A novel biosensing strategy has been developed for sensitive and selective detection of small molecule and protein interaction on the basis of terminal protection of small molecule-linked ssDNA-SWNT nanoassembly.The developed strategy is demonstrated using folate and its binding protein folate receptor (FR) as a model case.The results reveal the developed technique displays superb resistance to non-specific binding,very low detection limit as low as subnanomolar,and a wide dynamic range from 100 pmol/L to 500 nmol/L of FR.Thus,it may offer a simple,cost-effective,highly selective and sensitive platform for homogeneous fluorescence detection of small molecule-protein interaction and related biochemical studies.

  20. Hydrogen. A small molecule with large impact

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gehrke, H.; Ruthardt, K.; Mathiak, J.; Roosen, C. [Uhde GmbH, Dortmund (Germany)


    The first section of the presentation will provide general information about hydrogen including physical data, natural abundance, production and consumption figures. This will be followed by detailed information about current industrial production routes for hydrogen. Main on-purpose production for hydrogen is by classical steam reforming (SR) of natural gas. A brief overview of most important steps in stream reforming is given including reforming section, CO conversion and gas purification. Also the use of heavier than methane feedstocks and refinery off-gases is discussed. Alternative routes for hydrogen production or production of synthesis gas are autothermal reforming (ATR) or partial oxidation (POX). Pros and Cons for each specific technology are given and discussed. Gasification, especially gasification of renewable feedstocks, is a further possibility to produce hydrogen or synthesis gas. New developments and current commercial processes are presented. Hydrogen from electrolysis plants has only a small share on the hydrogen production slate, but in some cases this hydrogen is a suitable feedstock for niche applications with future potential. Finally, production of hydrogen by solar power as a new route is discussed. The final section focuses on the use of hydrogen. Classical applications are hydrogenation reactions in refineries, like HDS, HDN, hydrocracking and hydrofinishing. But, with an increased demand for liquid fuels for transportation or power supply, hydrogen becomes a key player in future as an energy source. Use of hydrogen in synthesis gas for the production of liquid fuels via Fischer-Tropsch synthesis or coal liquefaction is discussed as well as use of pure hydrogen in fuel cells. Additional, new application for biomass-derived feedstocks are discussed. (orig.)

  1. Defining RNA–Small Molecule Affinity Landscapes Enables Design of a Small Molecule Inhibitor of an Oncogenic Noncoding RNA (United States)


    RNA drug targets are pervasive in cells, but methods to design small molecules that target them are sparse. Herein, we report a general approach to score the affinity and selectivity of RNA motif–small molecule interactions identified via selection. Named High Throughput Structure–Activity Relationships Through Sequencing (HiT-StARTS), HiT-StARTS is statistical in nature and compares input nucleic acid sequences to selected library members that bind a ligand via high throughput sequencing. The approach allowed facile definition of the fitness landscape of hundreds of thousands of RNA motif–small molecule binding partners. These results were mined against folded RNAs in the human transcriptome and identified an avid interaction between a small molecule and the Dicer nuclease-processing site in the oncogenic microRNA (miR)-18a hairpin precursor, which is a member of the miR-17-92 cluster. Application of the small molecule, Targapremir-18a, to prostate cancer cells inhibited production of miR-18a from the cluster, de-repressed serine/threonine protein kinase 4 protein (STK4), and triggered apoptosis. Profiling the cellular targets of Targapremir-18a via Chemical Cross-Linking and Isolation by Pull Down (Chem-CLIP), a covalent small molecule–RNA cellular profiling approach, and other studies showed specific binding of the compound to the miR-18a precursor, revealing broadly applicable factors that govern small molecule drugging of noncoding RNAs.

  2. Differentiating Alzheimer disease-associated aggregates with small molecules. (United States)

    Honson, Nicolette S; Johnson, Ronald L; Huang, Wenwei; Inglese, James; Austin, Christopher P; Kuret, Jeff


    Alzheimer disease is diagnosed postmortem by the density and spatial distribution of beta-amyloid plaques and tau-bearing neurofibrillary tangles. The major protein component of each lesion adopts cross-beta-sheet conformation capable of binding small molecules with submicromolar affinity. In many cases, however, Alzheimer pathology overlaps with Lewy body disease, characterized by the accumulation of a third cross-beta-sheet forming protein, alpha-synuclein. To determine the feasibility of distinguishing tau aggregates from beta-amyloid and alpha-synuclein aggregates with small molecule probes, a library containing 72,455 small molecules was screened for antagonists of tau-aggregate-mediated changes in Thioflavin S fluorescence, followed by secondary screens to distinguish the relative affinity for each substrate protein. Results showed that >10-fold binding selectivity among substrates could be achieved, with molecules selective for tau aggregates containing at least three aromatic or rigid moieties connected by two rotatable bonds.

  3. Integrated Analysis Identifies Interaction Patterns between Small Molecules and Pathways (United States)

    Li, Yan; Li, Weiguo; Chen, Xin; Sun, Jiatong; Chen, Huan; Lv, Sali


    Previous studies have indicated that the downstream proteins in a key pathway can be potential drug targets and that the pathway can play an important role in the action of drugs. So pathways could be considered as targets of small molecules. A link map between small molecules and pathways was constructed using gene expression profile, pathways, and gene expression of cancer cell line intervened by small molecules and then we analysed the topological characteristics of the link map. Three link patterns were identified based on different drug discovery implications for breast, liver, and lung cancer. Furthermore, molecules that significantly targeted the same pathways tended to treat the same diseases. These results can provide a valuable reference for identifying drug candidates and targets in molecularly targeted therapy. PMID:25114931

  4. Molecules Great and Small: The Complement System. (United States)

    Mathern, Douglas R; Heeger, Peter S


    The complement cascade, traditionally considered an effector arm of innate immunity required for host defense against pathogens, is now recognized as a crucial pathogenic mediator of various kidney diseases. Complement components produced by the liver and circulating in the plasma undergo activation through the classical and/or mannose-binding lectin pathways to mediate anti-HLA antibody-initiated kidney transplant rejection and autoantibody-initiated GN, the latter including membranous glomerulopathy, antiglomerular basement membrane disease, and lupus nephritis. Inherited and/or acquired abnormalities of complement regulators, which requisitely limit restraint on alternative pathway complement activation, contribute to the pathogenesis of the C3 nephropathies and atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome. Increasing evidence links complement produced by endothelial cells and/or tubular cells to the pathogenesis of kidney ischemia-reperfusion injury and progressive kidney fibrosis. Data emerging since the mid-2000s additionally show that immune cells, including T cells and antigen-presenting cells, produce alternative pathway complement components during cognate interactions. The subsequent local complement activation yields production of the anaphylatoxins C3a and C5a, which bind to their respective receptors (C3aR and C5aR) on both partners to augment effector T-cell proliferation and survival, while simultaneously inhibiting regulatory T-cell induction and function. This immune cell-derived complement enhances pathogenic alloreactive T-cell immunity that results in transplant rejection and likely contributes to the pathogenesis of other T cell-mediated kidney diseases. C5a/C5aR ligations on neutrophils have additionally been shown to contribute to vascular inflammation in models of ANCA-mediated renal vasculitis. New translational immunology efforts along with the development of pharmacologic agents that block human complement components and receptors now permit

  5. Small Molecule Anticonvulsant Agents with Potent In Vitro Neuroprotection (United States)

    Smith, Garry R.; Zhang, Yan; Du, Yanming; Kondaveeti, Sandeep K.; Zdilla, Michael J.; Reitz, Allen B.


    Severe seizure activity is associated with recurring cycles of excitotoxicity and oxidative stress that result in progressive neuronal damage and death. Intervention to halt these pathological processes is a compelling disease-modifying strategy for the treatment of seizure disorders. In the present study, a core small molecule with anticonvulsant activity has been structurally optimized for neuroprotection. Phenotypic screening of rat hippocampal cultures with nutrient medium depleted of antioxidants was utilized as a disease model. Increased cell death and decreased neuronal viability produced by acute treatment with glutamate or hydrogen peroxide were prevented by our novel molecules. The neuroprotection associated with this chemical series has marked structure activity relationships that focus on modification of the benzylic position of a 2-phenyl-2-hydroxyethyl sulfamide core structure. Complete separation between anticonvulsant activity and neuroprotective action was dependent on substitution at the benzylic carbon. Chiral selectivity was evident in that the S-enantiomer of the benzylic hydroxy group had neither neuroprotective nor anticonvulsant activity, while the R-enantiomer of the lead compound had full neuroprotective action at ≤40 nM and antiseizure activity in three animal models. These studies indicate that potent, multifunctional neuroprotective anticonvulsants are feasible within a single molecular entity. PMID:22535312

  6. Synchrotron radiation VUV double photoionization of some small molecules

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhao Yu-Jie; Shan Xiao-Bin; Sheng Liu-Si; Wang Zhen-Ya; Zhang Jie; Yu Chun-Ri


    The VUV double photoionizations of small molecules(NO, CO, CO2, CS2, OSC and NH3)were investigated with photoionization mass spectroscopy using synchrotron radiation. The double ionization energies of molecules were determined with photoionization efficiency spectroscopy. The total energies of these molecules and their parent dications (NO2+, CO2+, CO2+2,CS2+2,OS2+C and NH2+3)were calculated using the Gaussian 03 program and Gaussian 2calculations. Then, the adiabatic double ionization energies of the molecules were predicated by using high accuracy energy mode. The experimental double ionization energies of these small molecules were all in reasonable agreement with their respective calculated adiabatic double ionization energies. The mechanisms of double photoionization of these molecules were discussed based on a comparison of our experimental results with those predicted theoretically. The equilibrium geometries and harmonic vibrational frequencies of molecules and their parent dications were calculated by using the MP2(full)method. The differences in configurations between these molecules and their parent dications were also discussed on the basis of theoretical calculations.

  7. Regulatory aspects of small molecule drugs for heart regeneration. (United States)

    Rodgers, Kathleen; Papinska, Anna; Mordwinkin, Nicholas


    Even though recent discoveries prove the existence of cardiac progenitor cells, internal regenerative capacity of the heart is minimal. As cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of deaths in the United States, a number of approaches are being used to develop treatments for heart repair and regeneration. Small molecule drugs are of particular interest as they are suited for oral administration and can be chemically synthesized. However, the regulatory process for the development of new treatment modalities is protracted, complex and expensive. One of the hurdles to development of appropriate therapies is the need for predictive preclinical models. The use of patient-derived cardiomyocytes from iPSC cells represents a novel tool for this purpose. Among other concepts for induction of heart regeneration, the most advanced is the combination of DPP-IV inhibitors with stem cell mobilizers. This review will focus on regulatory aspects as well as preclinical hurdles of development of new treatments for heart regeneration.

  8. Development of a unique small molecule modulator of CXCR4.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhongxing Liang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Metastasis, the spread and growth of tumor cells to distant organ sites, represents the most devastating attribute and plays a major role in the morbidity and mortality of cancer. Inflammation is crucial for malignant tumor transformation and survival. Thus, blocking inflammation is expected to serve as an effective cancer treatment. Among anti-inflammation therapies, chemokine modulation is now beginning to emerge from the pipeline. CXC chemokine receptor-4 (CXCR4 and its ligand stromal cell-derived factor-1 (CXCL12 interaction and the resulting cell signaling cascade have emerged as highly relevant targets since they play pleiotropic roles in metastatic progression. The unique function of CXCR4 is to promote the homing of tumor cells to their microenvironment at the distant organ sites. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We describe the actions of N,N'-(1,4-phenylenebis(methylenedipyrimidin-2-amine (designated MSX-122, a novel small molecule and partial CXCR4 antagonist with properties quite unlike that of any other reported CXCR4 antagonists, which was prepared in a single chemical step using a reductive amination reaction. Its specificity toward CXCR4 was tested in a binding affinity assay and a ligand competition assay using (18F-labeled MSX-122. The potency of the compound was determined in two functional assays, Matrigel invasion assay and cAMP modulation. The therapeutic potential of MSX-122 was evaluated in three different murine models for inflammation including an experimental colitis, carrageenan induced paw edema, and bleomycin induced lung fibrosis and three different animal models for metastasis including breast cancer micrometastasis in lung, head and neck cancer metastasis in lung, and uveal melanoma micrometastasis in liver in which CXCR4 was reported to play crucial roles. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We developed a novel small molecule, MSX-122, that is a partial CXCR4 antagonist without mobilizing stem cells, which can

  9. Chemisorption and Reactions of Small Molecules on Small Gold Particles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geoffrey C. Bond


    Full Text Available The activity of supported gold particles for a number of oxidations and hydrogenations starts to increase dramatically as the size falls below ~3 nm. This is accompanied by an increased propensity to chemisorption, especially of oxygen and hydrogen. The explanation for these phenomena has to be sought in kinetic analysis that connects catalytic activity with the strength and extent of chemisorption of the reactants, the latter depending on the electronic structure of the gold atoms constituting the active centre. Examination of the changes to the utilisation of electrons as particle size is decreased points to loss of metallic character at about 3 nm, as energy bands are replaced by levels, and a band gap appears. Detailed consideration of the Arrhenius parameters (E and ln A for CO oxidation points clearly to a step-change in activity at the point where metallic character is lost, as opposed to there being a monotonic dependence of rate on a physical property such as the fraction of atoms at corners or edges of particles. The deplorable scarcity of kinetic information on other reactions makes extension of this analysis difficult, but non-metallic behaviour is an unavoidable property of very small gold particles, and therefore cannot be ignored when seeking to explain their exceptional activity.

  10. Novel Small Molecule Inhibitors of Cancer Stem Cell Signaling Pathways. (United States)

    Abetov, Danysh; Mustapova, Zhanar; Saliev, Timur; Bulanin, Denis; Batyrbekov, Kanat; Gilman, Charles P


    The main aim of oncologists worldwide is to understand and then intervene in the primary tumor initiation and propagation mechanisms. This is essential to allow targeted elimination of cancer cells without altering normal mitotic cells. Currently, there are two main rival theories describing the process of tumorigenesis. According to the Stochastic Model, potentially any cell, once defunct, is capable of initiating carcinogenesis. Alternatively the Cancer Stem Cell (CSC) Model posits that only a small fraction of undifferentiated tumor cells are capable of triggering carcinogenesis. Like healthy stem cells, CSCs are also characterized by a capacity for self-renewal and the ability to generate differentiated progeny, possibly mediating treatment resistance, thus leading to tumor recurrence and metastasis. Moreover, molecular signaling profiles are similar between CSCs and normal stem cells, including Wnt, Notch and Hedgehog pathways. Therefore, development of novel chemotherapeutic agents and proteins (e.g., enzymes and antibodies) specifically targeting CSCs are attractive pharmaceutical candidates. This article describes small molecule inhibitors of stem cell pathways Wnt, Notch and Hedgehog, and their recent chemotherapy clinical trials.

  11. Small-molecule pheromones and hormones controlling nematode development. (United States)

    Butcher, Rebecca A


    The existence of small-molecule signals that influence development in Caenorhabditis elegans has been known for several decades, but only in recent years have the chemical structures of several of these signals been established. The identification of these signals has enabled connections to be made between these small molecules and fundamental signaling pathways in C. elegans that influence not only development but also metabolism, fertility, and lifespan. Spurred by these important discoveries and aided by recent advances in comparative metabolomics and NMR spectroscopy, the field of nematode chemistry has the potential to expand dramatically in the coming years. This Perspective will focus on small-molecule pheromones and hormones that influence developmental events in the nematode life cycle (ascarosides, dafachronic acids, and nemamides), will cover more recent work regarding the biosynthesis of these signals, and will explore how the discovery of these signals is transforming our understanding of nematode development and physiology.

  12. Cancer Immunotherapy: Selected Targets and Small-Molecule Modulators. (United States)

    Weinmann, Hilmar


    There is a significant amount of excitement in the scientific community around cancer immunotherapy, as this approach has renewed hope for many cancer patients owing to some recent successes in the clinic. Currently available immuno-oncology therapeutics under clinical development and on the market are mostly biologics (antibodies, proteins, engineered cells, and oncolytic viruses). However, modulation of the immune system with small molecules offers several advantages that may be complementary and potentially synergistic to the use of large biologicals. Therefore, the discovery and development of novel small-molecule modulators is a rapidly growing research area for medicinal chemists working in cancer immunotherapy. This review provides a brief introduction into recent trends related to selected targets and pathways for cancer immunotherapy and their small-molecule pharmacological modulators.

  13. Small-molecule control of protein function through Staudinger reduction (United States)

    Luo, Ji; Liu, Qingyang; Morihiro, Kunihiko; Deiters, Alexander


    Using small molecules to control the function of proteins in live cells with complete specificity is highly desirable, but challenging. Here we report a small-molecule switch that can be used to control protein activity. The approach uses a phosphine-mediated Staudinger reduction to activate protein function. Genetic encoding of an ortho-azidobenzyloxycarbonyl amino acid using a pyrrolysyl transfer RNA synthetase/tRNACUA pair in mammalian cells enables the site-specific introduction of a small-molecule-removable protecting group into the protein of interest. Strategic placement of this group renders the protein inactive until deprotection through a bioorthogonal Staudinger reduction delivers the active wild-type protein. This developed methodology was applied to the conditional control of several cellular processes, including bioluminescence (luciferase), fluorescence (enhanced green fluorescent protein), protein translocation (nuclear localization sequence), DNA recombination (Cre) and gene editing (Cas9).

  14. Increased Hydrogel Swelling Induced by Absorption of Small Molecules. (United States)

    Nam, Changwoo; Zimudzi, Tawanda J; Geise, Geoffrey M; Hickner, Michael A


    The water and small molecule uptake behavior of amphiphilic diacrylate terminated poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMSDA)/poly(ethylene glycol diacrylate) (PEGDA) cross-linked hydrogels were studied using attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy. These hydrogel networks absorbed more water as the PEGDA content of the network increased. In contrast to typical osmotic deswelling behavior that occurs when liquid water equilibrated hydrogels are immersed in small molecule solutions with water activities less than unity, water-swollen gels immersed in 2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulfonic acid (AMPS-H) solutions rapidly regained their water content within 4 min following an initial deswelling response. In situ ATR-FTIR analysis of the hydrogel film during the dynamic swelling experiment indicated that small molecule absorption into the gel played an important role in inducing gel reswelling in low water activity solutions. This aspect of polymer gel water uptake and interaction with small molecules is important for optimizing hydrogel coatings and hydrophilic polymer applications where there is an interaction between the internal chemical structure of the gel and electrolytes or other molecules in solution.

  15. Small-molecule discovery from DNA-encoded chemical libraries. (United States)

    Kleiner, Ralph E; Dumelin, Christoph E; Liu, David R


    Researchers seeking to improve the efficiency and cost effectiveness of the bioactive small-molecule discovery process have recently embraced selection-based approaches, which in principle offer much higher throughput and simpler infrastructure requirements compared with traditional small-molecule screening methods. Since selection methods benefit greatly from an information-encoding molecule that can be readily amplified and decoded, several academic and industrial groups have turned to DNA as the basis for library encoding and, in some cases, library synthesis. The resulting DNA-encoded synthetic small-molecule libraries, integrated with the high sensitivity of PCR and the recent development of ultra high-throughput DNA sequencing technology, can be evaluated very rapidly for binding or bond formation with a target of interest while consuming minimal quantities of material and requiring only modest investments of time and equipment. In this tutorial review we describe the development of two classes of approaches for encoding chemical structures and reactivity with DNA: DNA-recorded library synthesis, in which encoding and library synthesis take place separately, and DNA-directed library synthesis, in which DNA both encodes and templates library synthesis. We also describe in vitro selection methods used to evaluate DNA-encoded libraries and summarize successful applications of these approaches to the discovery of bioactive small molecules and novel chemical reactivity.

  16. Color-Coded Super-Resolution Small-Molecule Imaging. (United States)

    Beuzer, Paolo; La Clair, James J; Cang, Hu


    Although the development of super-resolution microscopy dates back to 1994, its applications have been primarily focused on visualizing cellular structures and targets, including proteins, DNA and sugars. We now report on a system that allows both monitoring of the localization of exogenous small molecules in live cells at low resolution and subsequent super-resolution imaging by using stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy (STORM) on fixed cells. This represents a powerful new tool to understand the dynamics of subcellular trafficking associated with the mode and mechanism of action of exogenous small molecules.

  17. Small molecule screening identifies targetable zebrafish pigmentation pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Colanesi, Sarah; Taylor, Kerrie L; Temperley, Nicholas D


    Small molecules complement genetic mutants and can be used to probe pigment cell biology by inhibiting specific proteins or pathways. Here, we present the results of a screen of active compounds for those that affect the processes of melanocyte and iridophore development in zebrafish and investig......Small molecules complement genetic mutants and can be used to probe pigment cell biology by inhibiting specific proteins or pathways. Here, we present the results of a screen of active compounds for those that affect the processes of melanocyte and iridophore development in zebrafish...

  18. Interaction of aromatic molecules with small gold clusters (United States)

    Molina, Luis M.; López, María. J.; Alonso, Julio A.


    Ab initio density functional simulations have been performed to study the adsorption of aromatic molecules (benzene and toluene) on small Aun clusters. The calculations reveal a strong interaction between gold and π electrons of benzene, accompanied by a small electronic charge transfer from benzene to gold. We report a variety of binding conformations, with varying degrees of contact between the carbon atoms in benzene and the cluster. Therefore, the interaction between the aromatic part of molecules involved in the synthesis of fine chemicals catalyzed by gold must not be neglected, and could play an important role during some reaction stages.

  19. Exporters for Production of Amino Acids and Other Small Molecules. (United States)

    Eggeling, Lothar


    Microbes are talented catalysts to synthesize valuable small molecules in their cytosol. However, to make full use of their skills - and that of metabolic engineers - the export of intracellularly synthesized molecules to the culture medium has to be considered. This step is as essential as is each step for the synthesis of the favorite molecule of the metabolic engineer, but is frequently not taken into account. To export small molecules via the microbial cell envelope, a range of different types of carrier proteins is recognized to be involved, which are primary active carriers, secondary active carriers, or proteins increasing diffusion. Relevant export may require just one carrier as is the case with L-lysine export by Corynebacterium glutamicum or involve up to four carriers as known for L-cysteine excretion by Escherichia coli. Meanwhile carriers for a number of small molecules of biotechnological interest are recognized, like for production of peptides, nucleosides, diamines, organic acids, or biofuels. In addition to carriers involved in amino acid excretion, such carriers and their impact on product formation are described, as well as the relatedness of export carriers which may serve as a hint to identify further carriers required to improve product formation by engineering export.

  20. Conformational analysis of small molecules: NMR and quantum mechanics calculations. (United States)

    Tormena, Cláudio F


    This review deals with conformational analysis in small organic molecules, and describes the stereoelectronic interactions responsible for conformational stability. Conformational analysis is usually performed using NMR spectroscopy through measurement of coupling constants at room or low temperature in different solvents to determine the populations of conformers in solution. Quantum mechanical calculations are used to address the interactions responsible for conformer stability. The conformational analysis of a large number of small molecules is described, using coupling constant measurements in different solvents and at low temperature, as well as recent applications of through-space and through-hydrogen bond coupling constants JFH as tools for the conformational analysis of fluorinated molecules. Besides NMR parameters, stereoelectronic interactions such as conjugative, hyperconjugative, steric and intramolecular hydrogen bond interactions involved in conformational preferences are discussed.

  1. Early intervention with a small molecule inhibitor for tumor nefosis factor-α prevents cognitive deficits in a triple transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabbita S


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chronic neuroinflammation is an important component of Alzheimer’s disease and could contribute to neuronal dysfunction, injury and loss that lead to disease progression. Multiple clinical studies implicate tumor necrosis factor-α as an inflammatory mediator of neurodegeneration in patients with Alzheimer’s because of elevated levels of this cytokine in the cerebrospinal fluid, hippocampus and cortex. Current Alzheimer’s disease interventions are symptomatic treatments with limited efficacy that do not address etiology. Thus, a critical need exists for novel treatments directed towards modifying the pathophysiology and progression. Methods To investigate the effect of early immune modulation on neuroinflammation and cognitive outcome, we treated triple transgenic Alzheimer’s disease mice (harboring PS1M146V, APPSwe, and tauP301L transgenes with the small molecule tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitors, 3,6′-dithiothalidomide and thalidomide, beginning at four months of age. At this young age, mice do not exhibit plaque or tau pathology but do show mild intraneuronal amyloid beta protein staining and a robust increase in tumor necrosis factor-α. After 10 weeks of treatment, cognitive performance was assessed using radial arm maze and neuroinflammation was assessed using biochemical, stereological and flow cytometric endpoints. Results 3,6′-dithiothalidomide reduced tumor necrosis factor-α mRNA and protein levels in the brain and improved working memory performance and the ratio of resting to reactive microglia in the hippocampus of triple transgenic mice. In comparison to non-transgenic controls, triple transgenic Alzheimer’s disease mice had increased total numbers of infiltrating peripheral monomyelocytic/granulocytic leukocytes with enhanced intracytoplasmic tumor necrosis factor-α, which was reduced after treatment with 3,6′-dithiothalidomide. Conclusions These results suggest that modulation of tumor

  2. Toward inkjet printing of small molecule organic light emitting diodes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gorter, H.; Coenen, M.J.J.; Slaats, M.W.L.; Ren, M.; Lu, W.; Kuijpers, C.J.; Groen, W.A.


    Thermal evaporation is the current standard for the manufacture of small molecule organic light emitting diodes (smOLEDs), but it requires vacuum process, complicated shadow masks and is inefficient in material utilization, resulting in high cost of ownership. As an alternative, wet solution deposit

  3. NMR structural studies of protein-small molecule interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shah, Dipen M.


    The research presented in the thesis describes the development and implementation of solution based NMR methods that provide 3D structural information on the protein-small molecule complexes. These methods can be critical for structure based drug design and can be readily applied in the early stages

  4. Caenorhabditis elegans chemical biology: lessons from small molecules (United States)

    How can we complement Caenorhabditis elegans genomics and proteomics with a comprehensive structural and functional annotation of its metabolome? Several lines of evidence indicate that small molecules of largely undetermined structure play important roles in C. elegans biology, including key pathw...

  5. Toward inkjet printing of small molecule organic light emitting diodes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gorter, H.; Coenen, M.J.J.; Slaats, M.W.L.; Ren, M.; Lu, W.; Kuijpers, C.J.; Groen, W.A.


    Thermal evaporation is the current standard for the manufacture of small molecule organic light emitting diodes (smOLEDs), but it requires vacuum process, complicated shadow masks and is inefficient in material utilization, resulting in high cost of ownership. As an alternative, wet solution deposit

  6. Predicting where small molecules bind at protein-protein interfaces.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Walter

    Full Text Available Small molecules that bind at protein-protein interfaces may either block or stabilize protein-protein interactions in cells. Thus, some of these binding interfaces may turn into prospective targets for drug design. Here, we collected 175 pairs of protein-protein (PP complexes and protein-ligand (PL complexes with known three-dimensional structures for which (1 one protein from the PP complex shares at least 40% sequence identity with the protein from the PL complex, and (2 the interface regions of these proteins overlap at least partially with each other. We found that those residues of the interfaces that may bind the other protein as well as the small molecule are evolutionary more conserved on average, have a higher tendency of being located in pockets and expose a smaller fraction of their surface area to the solvent than the remaining protein-protein interface region. Based on these findings we derived a statistical classifier that predicts patches at binding interfaces that have a higher tendency to bind small molecules. We applied this new prediction method to more than 10,000 interfaces from the protein data bank. For several complexes related to apoptosis the predicted binding patches were in direct contact to co-crystallized small molecules.

  7. A small molecule polyamine oxidase inhibitor blocks androgen-induced oxidative stress and delays prostate cancer progression in the transgenic adenocarcinoma of the mouse prostate model. (United States)

    Basu, Hirak S; Thompson, Todd A; Church, Dawn R; Clower, Cynthia C; Mehraein-Ghomi, Farideh; Amlong, Corey A; Martin, Christopher T; Woster, Patrick M; Lindstrom, Mary J; Wilding, George


    High levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) present in human prostate epithelia are an important etiologic factor in prostate cancer (CaP) occurrence, recurrence, and progression. Androgen induces ROS production in the prostate by a yet unknown mechanism. Here, to the best of our knowledge, we report for the first time that androgen induces an overexpression of spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase, the rate-limiting enzyme in the polyamine oxidation pathway. As prostatic epithelia produce a large excess of polyamines, the androgen-induced polyamine oxidation that produces H2O2 could be a major reason for the high ROS levels in the prostate epithelia. A small molecule polyamine oxidase inhibitor N,N'-butanedienyl butanediamine (MDL 72,527 or CPC-200) effectively blocks androgen-induced ROS production in human CaP cells, as well as significantly delays CaP progression and death in animals developing spontaneous CaP. These data show that polyamine oxidation is not only a major pathway for ROS production in prostate, but inhibiting this pathway also successfully delays CaP progression.

  8. A Small Molecule Polyamine Oxidase Inhibitor Blocks Androgen-Induced Oxidative Stress and Delays Prostate Cancer Progression in the TRAMP Mouse Model (United States)

    Basu, Hirak S.; Thompson, Todd A.; Church, Dawn R.; Clower, Cynthia C.; Mehraein-Ghomi, Farideh; Amlong, Corey A.; Martin, Christopher T.; Woster, Patrick M.; Lindstrom, Mary J.; Wilding, George


    High levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) present in human prostate epithelia are an important etiological factor in prostate cancer (CaP) occurrence, recurrence and progression. Androgen induces ROS production in the prostate by a yet unknown mechanism. Here, to the best of our knowledge, we report for the first time that androgen induces an overexpression of spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT), the rate-limiting enzyme in the polyamine oxidation pathway. As prostatic epithelia produce a large excess of polyamines, the androgen-induced polyamine oxidation that produces H2O2 could be a major reason for the high ROS levels in the prostate epithelia. A small molecule polyamine oxidase inhibitor N,N'-butanedienyl butanediamine (MDL 72,527 or CPC-200) effectively blocks androgen-induced ROS production in human CaP cells as well as significantly delays CaP progression and death in animals developing spontaneous CaP. These data demonstrate that polyamine oxidation is not only a major pathway for ROS production in prostate, but inhibiting this pathway also successfully delays prostate cancer progression. PMID:19773450

  9. Gradient-Driven Molecule Construction: An Inverse Approach Applied to the Design of Small-Molecule Fixating Catalysts

    CERN Document Server

    Weymuth, Thomas


    Rational design of molecules and materials usually requires extensive screening of molecular structures for the desired property. The inverse approach to deduce a structure for a predefined property would be highly desirable, but is, unfortunately, not well-defined. However, feasible strategies for such an inverse design process may be successfully developed for specific purposes. We discuss options for calculating 'jacket' potentials that fulfill a predefined target requirement - a concept that we recently introduced [T. Weymuth, M. Reiher, MRS Proceediungs, 2013, 1524, DOI:10.1557/opl.2012.1764]. We consider the case of small-molecule activating transition metal catalysts. As a target requirement we choose the vanishing geometry gradients on all atoms of a subsystem consisting of a metal center binding the small molecule to be activated. The jacket potential can be represented within a full quantum model or by a sequence of approximations of which a field of electrostatic point charges is the simplest. In a...

  10. Intercalation of small hydrophobic molecules in lipid bilayers containing cholesterol

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Worcester, D.L.; Hamacher, K.; Kaiser, H.; Kulasekere, R.; Torbet, J. [Univ. of Missouri, Columbia, MO (United States)


    Partitioning of small hydrophobic molecules into lipid bilayers containing cholesterol has been studied using the 2XC diffractometer at the University of Missouri Research Reactor. Locations of the compounds were determined by Fourier difference methods with data from both deuterated and undeuterated compounds introduced into the bilayers from the vapor phase. Data fitting procedures were developed for determining how well the compounds were localized. The compounds were found to be localized in a narrow region at the center of the hydrophobic layer, between the two halves of the bilayer. The structures are therefore intercalated structures with the long axis of the molecules in the plane of the bilayer.

  11. Managing missing measurements in small-molecule screens (United States)

    Browning, Michael R.; Calhoun, Bradley T.; Swamidass, S. Joshua.


    In a typical high-throughput screening (HTS) campaign, less than 1 % of the small-molecule library is characterized by confirmatory experiments. As much as 99 % of the library's molecules are set aside—and not included in downstream analysis—although some of these molecules would prove active were they sent for confirmatory testing. These missing experimental measurements prevent active molecules from being identified by screeners. In this study, we propose managing missing measurements using imputation—a powerful technique from the machine learning community—to fill in accurate guesses where measurements are missing. We then use these imputed measurements to construct an imputed visualization of HTS results, based on the scaffold tree visualization from the literature. This imputed visualization identifies almost all groups of active molecules from a HTS, even those that would otherwise be missed. We validate our methodology by simulating HTS experiments using the data from eight quantitative HTS campaigns, and the implications for drug discovery are discussed. In particular, this method can rapidly and economically identify novel active molecules, each of which could have novel function in either binding or selectivity in addition to representing new intellectual property.

  12. Small and Large Molecules in the Diffuse Interstellar Medium (United States)

    Oka, Takeshi; Huang, Jane


    Although molecules with a wide range of sizes exist in dense clouds (e.g. H(C≡C)_nC≡N with n = 0 - 5), molecules identified in diffuse clouds are all small ones. Since the initial discovery of CH, CN, and CH^+, all molecules detected in the optical region are diatomics except for H_3^+ in the infrared and C_3 in the visible. Radio observations have been limited up to triatomic molecules except for H_2CO and the ubiquitous C_3H_2. The column densities of all molecules are less than 1014 cm-2 with the two exceptions of CO and H_3^+ as well as CH and C_2 in a few special sightlines. Larger molecules with many carbon atoms have been searched for but have not been detected. On the other hand, the observations of a great many diffuse interstellar bands (380 toward HD 204827 and 414 toward HD 183143) with equivalent widths from 1 to 5700 m Å indicate high column densities of many heavy molecules. If an electronic transition dipole moment of 1 Debye is assumed, the observed equivalent widths translate to column densities from 5 × 1011 cm-2 to 3 × 1015 cm-2. It seems impossible that these large molecules are formed from chemical reactions in space from small molecules. It is more likely that they are fragments of aggregates, perhaps mixed aromatic/aliphatic organic nanoparticles (MAONS). MAONS and their large fragment molecules are stable against photodissociation in the diffuse ISM because the energy of absorbed photons is divided into statistical distributions of vibrational energy and emitted in the infrared rather than breaking a chemical bond. We use a simple Rice-Ramsperger-Kassel-Marcus theory to estimate the molecular size required for the stabilization. Snow, T. P. & McCall, B. J. 2006, ARA&A, 44 367 Hobbs, L. M., York, D. G., Snow, T. P., Oka, T., Thorburn, J. A., et al. 2008, ApJ, 680 1256 Hobbs, L. M., York, D. G., Thorburn, J. A., Snow, T. P., Bishof, M., et al. 2009, ApJ, 705 32 Kwok, S. & Zhang, S. 2013, ApJ, 771 5 Freed, K. F., Oka, T., & Suzuki, H

  13. Xyloketal-derived small molecules show protective effect by decreasing mutant Huntingtin protein aggregates in Caenorhabditis elegans model of Huntington’s disease (United States)

    Zeng, Yixuan; Guo, Wenyuan; Xu, Guangqing; Wang, Qinmei; Feng, Luyang; Long, Simei; Liang, Fengyin; Huang, Yi; Lu, Xilin; Li, Shichang; Zhou, Jiebin; Burgunder, Jean-Marc; Pang, Jiyan; Pei, Zhong


    Huntington’s disease is an autosomal-dominant neurodegenerative disorder, with chorea as the most prominent manifestation. The disease is caused by abnormal expansion of CAG codon repeats in the IT15 gene, which leads to the expression of a glutamine-rich protein named mutant Huntingtin (Htt). Because of its devastating disease burden and lack of valid treatment, development of more effective therapeutics for Huntington’s disease is urgently required. Xyloketal B, a natural product from mangrove fungus, has shown protective effects against toxicity in other neurodegenerative disease models such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. To identify potential neuroprotective molecules for Huntington’s disease, six derivatives of xyloketal B were screened in a Caenorhabditis elegans Huntington’s disease model; all six compounds showed a protective effect. Molecular docking studies indicated that compound 1 could bind to residues GLN369 and GLN393 of the mutant Htt protein, forming a stable trimeric complex that can prevent the formation of mutant Htt aggregates. Taken together, we conclude that xyloketal derivatives could be novel drug candidates for treating Huntington’s disease. Molecular target analysis is a good method to simulate the interaction between proteins and drug compounds. Further, protective candidate drugs could be designed in future using the guidance of molecular docking results. PMID:27110099

  14. Xyloketal-derived small molecules show protective effect by decreasing mutant Huntingtin protein aggregates in Caenorhabditis elegans model of Huntington's disease. (United States)

    Zeng, Yixuan; Guo, Wenyuan; Xu, Guangqing; Wang, Qinmei; Feng, Luyang; Long, Simei; Liang, Fengyin; Huang, Yi; Lu, Xilin; Li, Shichang; Zhou, Jiebin; Burgunder, Jean-Marc; Pang, Jiyan; Pei, Zhong


    Huntington's disease is an autosomal-dominant neurodegenerative disorder, with chorea as the most prominent manifestation. The disease is caused by abnormal expansion of CAG codon repeats in the IT15 gene, which leads to the expression of a glutamine-rich protein named mutant Huntingtin (Htt). Because of its devastating disease burden and lack of valid treatment, development of more effective therapeutics for Huntington's disease is urgently required. Xyloketal B, a natural product from mangrove fungus, has shown protective effects against toxicity in other neurodegenerative disease models such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases. To identify potential neuroprotective molecules for Huntington's disease, six derivatives of xyloketal B were screened in a Caenorhabditis elegans Huntington's disease model; all six compounds showed a protective effect. Molecular docking studies indicated that compound 1 could bind to residues GLN369 and GLN393 of the mutant Htt protein, forming a stable trimeric complex that can prevent the formation of mutant Htt aggregates. Taken together, we conclude that xyloketal derivatives could be novel drug candidates for treating Huntington's disease. Molecular target analysis is a good method to simulate the interaction between proteins and drug compounds. Further, protective candidate drugs could be designed in future using the guidance of molecular docking results.

  15. Reaction dynamics of small molecules at metal surfaces

    CERN Document Server

    Samson, P A


    directed angular distributions suggest the influence of a trapping mechanism, recombining molecules scattering through a molecularly adsorbed state, with a transition state of large d sub N sub N responsible for the product vibrational excitation. Although N sub 2 dissociation on Fe(100) forms a simple overlayer structure, on Fe(110), molecular chemisorption does not occur at or above room temperature and the sticking is extremely small (approx 10 sup - sup 6 to 10 sup - sup 7). Activated nitrogen bombardment can be used to prepare a 'surface nitride' with a structure related to the geometry of bulk Fe sub 4 N. Scanning tunnelling microscopy yields atomic scale features that cannot be explained by simple overlayers. It is proposed that the uppermost iron layer reconstructs to generate quasi-octahedral sites between the top two layers, with sub-surface nitrogen in these sites forming a model for the 'surface nitride' structure. The dissociation-desorption dynamics of D sub 2 upon the Sn/Pt(111) surface alloy a...

  16. Dissecting RNA-interference pathway with small molecules. (United States)

    Chiu, Ya-Lin; Dinesh, Chimmanamada U; Chu, Chia-ying; Ali, Akbar; Brown, Kirk M; Cao, Hong; Rana, Tariq M


    RNA interference (RNAi) is a process whereby short-interfering RNAs (siRNA) silence gene expression in a sequence-specific manner. We have screened a chemical library of substituted dihydropteridinones and identified a nontoxic, cell permeable, and reversible inhibitor of the RNAi pathway in human cells. Biochemical and fluorescence resonance-energy transfer experiments demonstrated that one of the compounds, named ATPA-18, inhibited siRNA unwinding that occurred within 6 hr of siRNA transfection. Extracts prepared from ATPA-18-treated cells also exhibited a decrease in target RNA cleavage by activated RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC*). Interestingly, when activated RISC*, which harbors unwound antisense siRNA, was treated with ATPA-18 in vitro, target RNA cleavage was not affected, indicating that this compound inhibited siRNA unwinding or steps upstream of unwinding in the RNAi pathway. Our results also establish the timing of siRNA unwinding and show that siRNA helicase activity is required for RNAi. ATPA-18 analogs will therefore provide a new class of small molecules for studying RNAi mechanisms in a variety of model organisms and deciphering in vivo genetic functions through reverse genetics.

  17. Modulated iontophoretic delivery of small and large molecules through microchannels. (United States)

    Kumar, Vijay; Banga, Ajay K


    The objective of this work was to modulate transdermal drug delivery by iontophoresis though skin microchannels created by microneedles. Calcein and human growth hormone were used as a model small and large molecule, respectively. In vitro permeation studies were performed on porcine ear skin under three different settings: (a) modulated iontophoresis alone, (b) pretreatment with microneedles and (c) combination of microneedles pretreatment and modulated iontophoresis. For modulated iontophoresis, 0.5 mA/cm(2) current was applied for 1h each at 2nd and 6th hour of the study. Methylene blue staining, calcein imaging and pore permeability index suggested maltose microneedles created uniform microchannels in skin. Application of iontophoresis provided two peaks in flux of 1.04 μg/(cm(2)h) at 4th hour and 2.09 μg/(cm(2)h) at 8th hour of study for calcein. These peaks in flux were significant higher when skin was pretreated with microneedles (piontophoresis. This combination also provided significant increase in cumulative amount of calcein and human growth hormone delivered as compared to microneedles or iontophoresis alone (piontophoresis can be used to modulate drug delivery across skin microchannels created by microneedles.

  18. A general strategy to construct small molecule biosensors in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Feng, Justin; Jester, Benjamin W; Tinberg, Christine E; Mandell, Daniel J; Antunes, Mauricio S; Chari, Raj; Morey, Kevin J; Rios, Xavier; Medford, June I; Church, George M; Fields, Stanley; Baker, David


    Biosensors for small molecules can be used in applications that range from metabolic engineering to orthogonal control of transcription. Here, we produce biosensors based on a ligand-binding domain (LBD) by using a method that, in principle, can be applied to any target molecule. The LBD is fused to either a fluorescent protein or a transcriptional activator and is destabilized by mutation such that the fusion accumulates only in cells containing the target ligand. We illustrate the power of this method by developing biosensors for digoxin and progesterone. Addition of ligand to yeast, mammalian, or plant cells expressing a biosensor activates transcription with a dynamic range of up to ~100-fold. We use the biosensors to improve the biotransformation of pregnenolone to progesterone in yeast and to regulate CRISPR activity in mammalian cells. This work provides a general methodology to develop biosensors for a broad range of molecules in eukaryotes.

  19. Ultrafast charge redistribution in small iodine containing molecules

    CERN Document Server

    Hollstein, Maximilian; Gerken, Nils; Klumpp, Stephan; Palutke, Steffen; Baev, Ivan; Brenner, Günter; Dziarzhytski, Siarhei; Wurth, Wilfried; Pfannkuche, Daniela


    The competition between intra molecular charge redistribution and fragmentation has been studied in small molecules containing iodine by using intense ultrashort pulses in the extreme ultraviolet regime (XUV). We show that after an element specific inner-shell photoionization of diiodomethane (CH$_2$I$_2$) and iodomethane (CH$_3$I), the induced positive charge is redistributed with a significantly different efficiency. Therefore, we analyze ion time-of-flight data obtained from XUV-pump XUV-probe experiments at the Free Electron Laser in Hamburg (FLASH). Theoretical considerations on the basis of ab initio electronic structure calculations including correlations relate this effect to a strongly molecule specific, purely electronic charge redistribution process that takes place directly after photoionization causing a distribution of the induced positive charge predominantly on the atoms which exhibit the lowest atomic ionization potential, i.e, in the molecules considered, the iodine atom(s). As a result of t...

  20. Small molecule probes for plant cell wall polysaccharide imaging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian eWallace


    Full Text Available Plant cell walls are composed of interlinked polymer networks consisting of cellulose, hemicelluloses, pectins, proteins, and lignin. The ordered deposition of these components is a dynamic process that critically affects the development and differentiation of plant cells. However, our understanding of cell wall synthesis and remodeling, as well as the diverse cell wall architectures that result from these processes, has been limited by a lack of suitable chemical probes that are compatible with live-cell imaging. In this review, we summarize the currently available molecular toolbox of probes for cell wall polysaccharide imaging in plants, with particular emphasis on recent advances in small molecule-based fluorescent probes. We also discuss the potential for further development of small molecule probes for the analysis of cell wall architecture and dynamics.

  1. Carbon nanotubes for delivery of small molecule drugs. (United States)

    Wong, Bin Sheng; Yoong, Sia Lee; Jagusiak, Anna; Panczyk, Tomasz; Ho, Han Kiat; Ang, Wee Han; Pastorin, Giorgia


    In the realm of drug delivery, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have gained tremendous attention as promising nanocarriers, owing to their distinct characteristics, such as high surface area, enhanced cellular uptake and the possibility to be easily conjugated with many therapeutics, including both small molecules and biologics, displaying superior efficacy, enhanced specificity and diminished side effects. While most CNT-based drug delivery system (DDS) had been engineered to combat cancers, there are also emerging reports that employ CNTs as either the main carrier or adjunct material for the delivery of various non-anticancer drugs. In this review, the delivery of small molecule drugs is expounded, with special attention paid to the current progress of in vitro and in vivo research involving CNT-based DDSs, before finally concluding with some consideration on inevitable complications that hamper successful disease intervention with CNTs.

  2. Enhanced Vibrational Spectroscopies as Tools for Small Molecule Biosensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Souhir Boujday


    Full Text Available In this short summary we summarize some of the latest developments in vibrational spectroscopic tools applied for the sensing of (small molecules and biomolecules in a label-free mode of operation. We first introduce various concepts for the enhancement of InfraRed spectroscopic techniques, including the principles of Attenuated Total Reflection InfraRed (ATR-IR, (phase-modulated InfraRed Reflection Absorption Spectroscopy (IRRAS/PM-IRRAS, and Surface Enhanced Infrared Reflection Absorption Spectroscopy (SEIRAS. Particular attention is put on the use of novel nanostructured substrates that allow for the excitation of propagating and localized surface plasmon modes aimed at operating additional enhancement mechanisms. This is then be complemented by the description of the latest development in Surface- and Tip-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopies, again with an emphasis on the detection of small molecules or bioanalytes.

  3. What is next for small-molecule drug discovery? (United States)

    Doweyko, Arthur M; Doweyko, Lidia M


    Humankind has been in the business of discovering drugs for thousands of years. At present, small-molecule drug design is based on specific macromolecular receptors as targets for inhibition or modulation. To this end, a number of clever approaches have evolved over time: computer-aided techniques including structure-activity relationships and synthesis, high-throughput screening, quantitative structure-activity relationships, hypotheses derived from ligand- and/or structure-based information and focused library approaches. In recent years, several alternative strategies have appeared in the form of the emerging paradigms of polypharmacology, systems biology and personalized medicine. These innovations point to key challenges and breakthroughs likely to affect the future of small-molecule drug discovery.

  4. Small molecules with antiviral activity against the Ebola virus. (United States)

    Litterman, Nadia; Lipinski, Christopher; Ekins, Sean


    The recent outbreak of the Ebola virus in West Africa has highlighted the clear shortage of broad-spectrum antiviral drugs for emerging viruses. There are numerous FDA approved drugs and other small molecules described in the literature that could be further evaluated for their potential as antiviral compounds. These molecules are in addition to the few new antivirals that have been tested in Ebola patients but were not originally developed against the Ebola virus, and may play an important role as we await an effective vaccine. The balance between using FDA approved drugs versus novel antivirals with minimal safety and no efficacy data in humans should be considered. We have evaluated 55 molecules from the perspective of an experienced medicinal chemist as well as using simple molecular properties and have highlighted 16 compounds that have desirable qualities as well as those that may be less desirable. In addition we propose that a collaborative database for sharing such published and novel information on small molecules is needed for the research community studying the Ebola virus.

  5. Analysis of Imprecision in Incurred Sample Reanalysis for Small Molecules


    Subramaniam, Sriram; Patel, Devvrat; Davit, Barbara M.; Conner, Dale P.


    Over the years, incurred sample (IS) reanalysis (ISR) has become a tool to confirm the reliability of bioanalytical measurements. The recommendation for ISR acceptance criterion for small molecules is at least 67% of ISR samples that have reanalyzed concentrations within 20% of their original concentrations when normalized to their means. To understand the relevance of the ISR acceptance criterion and sample size requirements, simulated ISR studies evaluated the probability of ISR studies pas...

  6. Biocatalysts and their small molecule products from metagenomic studies



    The vast majority of bacteria present in environmental samples have never been cultured and therefore they have not been available to exploit their ability to produce useful biocatalysts or collections of biocatalysts that can biosynthesize interesting small molecules. Metagenomic libraries constructed using DNA extracted directly from natural bacterial communities offer access to the genetic information present in the genomes of these as yet uncultured bacteria. This review highlights recent...

  7. Polymer and small molecule based hybrid light source (United States)

    Choong, Vi-En; Choulis, Stelios; Krummacher, Benjamin Claus; Mathai, Mathew; So, Franky


    An organic electroluminescent device, includes: a substrate; a hole-injecting electrode (anode) coated over the substrate; a hole injection layer coated over the anode; a hole transporting layer coated over the hole injection layer; a polymer based light emitting layer, coated over the hole transporting layer; a small molecule based light emitting layer, thermally evaporated over the polymer based light emitting layer; and an electron-injecting electrode (cathode) deposited over the electroluminescent polymer layer.

  8. Recent advances in small molecule OLED-on-silicon microdisplays (United States)

    Ghosh, Amalkumar P.; Ali, Tariq A.; Khayrullin, Ilyas; Vazan, Fridrich; Prache, Olivier F.; Wacyk, Ihor


    High resolution OLED-on-silicon microdisplay technology is unique and challenging since it requires very small subpixel dimensions (~ 2-5 microns). eMagin's OLED microdisplay is based on white top emitter architecture using small molecule organic materials. The devices are fabricated using high Tg materials. The devices are hermetically sealed with vacuum deposited thin film layers. LCD-type color filters are patterned using photolithography methods to generate primary R, G, B colors. Results of recent improvements in the OLED-on-silicon microdisplay technology, with emphasis on efficiencies, lifetimes, grey scale and CIE color coordinates for SVGA and SXGA resolution microdisplays is presented.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    D. Ditschke; O. Gothel; H. Weilbeer


    Long term morphological simulations using complete coupled models lead to very time consuming computations. Latteux (1995) presented modelling techniques developed for tidal current situations in order to reduce the computational effort. In this paper the applicability of such methods to small scale problems is investigated. It is pointed out that these methods can be transferred to small scale problems using the periodicity of the vortex shedding process.

  10. New small molecules targeting apoptosis and cell viability in osteosarcoma.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doris Maugg

    Full Text Available Despite the option of multimodal therapy in the treatment strategies of osteosarcoma (OS, the most common primary malignant bone tumor, the standard therapy has not changed over the last decades and still involves multidrug chemotherapy and radical surgery. Although successfully applied in many patients a large number of patients eventually develop recurrent or metastatic disease in which current therapeutic regimens often lack efficacy. Thus, new therapeutic strategies are urgently needed. In this study, we performed a phenotypic high-throughput screening campaign using a 25,000 small-molecule diversity library to identify new small molecules selectively targeting osteosarcoma cells. We could identify two new small molecules that specifically reduced cell viability in OS cell lines U2OS and HOS, but affected neither hepatocellular carcinoma cell line (HepG2 nor primary human osteoblasts (hOB. In addition, the two compounds induced caspase 3 and 7 activity in the U2OS cell line. Compared to conventional drugs generally used in OS treatment such as doxorubicin, we indeed observed a greater sensitivity of OS cell viability to the newly identified compounds compared to doxorubicin and staurosporine. The p53-negative OS cell line Saos-2 almost completely lacked sensitivity to compound treatment that could indicate a role of p53 in the drug response. Taken together, our data show potential implications for designing more efficient therapies in OS.

  11. Urea transporter proteins as targets for small-molecule diuretics (United States)

    Esteva-Font, Cristina; Anderson, Marc O.; Verkman, Alan S.


    Conventional diuretics such as furosemide and thiazides target salt transporters in kidney tubules, but urea transporters (UTs) have emerged as alternative targets. UTs are a family of transmembrane channels expressed in a variety of mammalian tissues, in particular the kidney. UT knockout mice and humans with UT mutations exhibit reduced maximal urinary osmolality, demonstrating that UTs are necessary for the concentration of urine. Small-molecule screening has identified potent and selective inhibitors of UT-A, the UT protein expressed in renal tubule epithelial cells, and UT-B, the UT protein expressed in vasa recta endothelial cells. Data from UT knockout mice and from rodents administered UT inhibitors support the diuretic action of UT inhibition. The kidney-specific expression of UT-A1, together with high selectivity of the small-molecule inhibitors, means that off-target effects of such small-molecule drugs should be minimal. This Review summarizes the structure, expression and function of UTs, and looks at the evidence supporting the validity of UTs as targets for the development of salt-sparing diuretics with a unique mechanism of action. UT-targeted inhibitors may be useful alone or in combination with conventional diuretics for therapy of various oedemas and hyponatraemias, potentially including those refractory to treatment with current diuretics. PMID:25488859

  12. Small molecule inhibitors target the tissue transglutaminase and fibronectin interaction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bakhtiyor Yakubov

    Full Text Available Tissue transglutaminase (TG2 mediates protein crosslinking through generation of ε-(γ-glutamyl lysine isopeptide bonds and promotes cell adhesion through interaction with fibronectin (FN and integrins. Cell adhesion to the peritoneal matrix regulated by TG2 facilitates ovarian cancer dissemination. Therefore, disruption of the TG2-FN complex by small molecules may inhibit cell adhesion and metastasis. A novel high throughput screening (HTS assay based on AlphaLISA™ technology was developed to measure the formation of a complex between His-TG2 and the biotinylated FN fragment that binds TG2 and to discover small molecules that inhibit this protein-protein interaction. Several hits were identified from 10,000 compounds screened. The top candidates selected based on >70% inhibition of the TG2/FN complex formation were confirmed by using ELISA and bioassays measuring cell adhesion, migration, invasion, and proliferation. In conclusion, the AlphaLISA bead format assay measuring the TG2-FN interaction is robust and suitable for HTS of small molecules. One compound identified from the screen (TG53 potently inhibited ovarian cancer cell adhesion to FN, cell migration, and invasion and could be further developed as a potential inhibitor for ovarian cancer dissemination.

  13. Organic synthesis toward small-molecule probes and drugs (United States)

    Schreiber, Stuart L.


    “Organic synthesis” is a compound-creating activity often focused on biologically active small molecules. This special issue of PNAS explores innovations and trends in the field that are enabling the synthesis of new types of small-molecule probes and drugs. This perspective article frames the research described in the special issue but also explores how these modern capabilities can both foster a new and more extensive view of basic research in the academy and promote the linkage of life-science research to the discovery of novel types of small-molecule therapeutics [Schreiber SL (2009) Chem Bio Chem 10:26–29]. This new view of basic research aims to bridge the chasm between basic scientific discoveries in life sciences and new drugs that treat the root cause of human disease—recently referred to as the “valley of death” for drug discovery. This perspective article describes new roles that modern organic chemistry will need to play in overcoming this challenge. PMID:21464328

  14. Small-Molecule Hormones: Molecular Mechanisms of Action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Puzianowska-Kuznicka


    Full Text Available Small-molecule hormones play crucial roles in the development and in the maintenance of an adult mammalian organism. On the molecular level, they regulate a plethora of biological pathways. Part of their actions depends on their transcription-regulating properties, exerted by highly specific nuclear receptors which are hormone-dependent transcription factors. Nuclear hormone receptors interact with coactivators, corepressors, basal transcription factors, and other transcription factors in order to modulate the activity of target genes in a manner that is dependent on tissue, age and developmental and pathophysiological states. The biological effect of this mechanism becomes apparent not earlier than 30–60 minutes after hormonal stimulus. In addition, small-molecule hormones modify the function of the cell by a number of nongenomic mechanisms, involving interaction with proteins localized in the plasma membrane, in the cytoplasm, as well as with proteins localized in other cellular membranes and in nonnuclear cellular compartments. The identity of such proteins is still under investigation; however, it seems that extranuclear fractions of nuclear hormone receptors commonly serve this function. A direct interaction of small-molecule hormones with membrane phospholipids and with mRNA is also postulated. In these mechanisms, the reaction to hormonal stimulus appears within seconds or minutes.

  15. Reprogramming with Small Molecules instead of Exogenous Transcription Factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tongxiang Lin


    Full Text Available Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs could be employed in the creation of patient-specific stem cells, which could subsequently be used in various basic and clinical applications. However, current iPSC methodologies present significant hidden risks with respect to genetic mutations and abnormal expression which are a barrier in realizing the full potential of iPSCs. A chemical approach is thought to be a promising strategy for safety and efficiency of iPSC generation. Many small molecules have been identified that can be used in place of exogenous transcription factors and significantly improve iPSC reprogramming efficiency and quality. Recent studies have shown that the use of small molecules results in the generation of chemically induced pluripotent stem cells from mouse embryonic fibroblast cells. These studies might lead to new areas of stem cell research and medical applications, not only human iPSC by chemicals alone, but also safe generation of somatic stem cells for cell based clinical trials and other researches. In this paper, we have reviewed the recent advances in small molecule approaches for the generation of iPSCs.

  16. Path-Integral Calculations of Nuclear Quantum Effects in Model Systems, Small Molecules, and Enzymes via Gradient-Based Forward Corrector Algorithms. (United States)

    Azuri, Asaf; Engel, Hamutal; Doron, Dvir; Major, Dan Thomas


    A practical approach to treat nuclear quantum mechanical (QM) effects in simulations of condensed phases, such as enzymes, is via Feynman path integral (PI) formulations. Typically, the standard primitive approximation (PA) is employed in enzymatic PI simulations. Nonetheless, these PI simulations are computationally demanding due to the large number of discretizations, or beads, required to obtain converged results. The efficiency of PI simulations may be greatly improved if higher order factorizations of the density matrix operator are employed. Herein, we compare the results of model calculations obtained employing the standard PA, the improved operator of Takahashi and Imada (TI), and several gradient-based forward corrector algorithms due to Chin (CH). The quantum partition function is computed for the harmonic oscillator, Morse, symmetric, and asymmetric double well potentials. These potentials are simple models for nuclear quantum effects, such as zero-point energy and tunneling. It is shown that a unique set of CH parameters may be employed for a variety of systems. Additionally, the nuclear QM effects of a water molecule, treated with density functional theory, are computed. Finally, we derive a practical perturbation expression for efficient computation of isotope effects in chemical systems using the staging algorithm. This new isotope effect approach is tested in conjunction with the PA, TI, and CH methods to compute the equilibrium isotope effect in the Schiff base-oxyanion keto-enol tautomerism in the cofactor pyridoxal-5'-phosphate in the enzyme alanine racemase. The study of the different factorization methods reveals that the higher-order actions converge substantially faster than the PA approach, at a moderate computational cost.

  17. High-throughput screening identifies small molecules that enhance the pharmacological effects of oligonucleotides (United States)

    Yang, B.; Ming, X.; Cao, C.; Laing, B.; Yuan, A.; Porter, M. A.; Hull-Ryde, E. A.; Maddry, J.; Suto, M.; Janzen, W. P.; Juliano, R. L.


    The therapeutic use of antisense and siRNA oligonucleotides has been constrained by the limited ability of these membrane-impermeable molecules to reach their intracellular sites of action. We sought to address this problem using small organic molecules to enhance the effects of oligonucleotides by modulating their intracellular trafficking and release from endosomes. A high-throughput screen of multiple small molecule libraries yielded several hits that markedly potentiated the actions of splice switching oligonucleotides in cell culture. These compounds also enhanced the effects of antisense and siRNA oligonucleotides. The hit compounds preferentially caused release of fluorescent oligonucleotides from late endosomes rather than other intracellular compartments. Studies in a transgenic mouse model indicated that these compounds could enhance the in vivo effects of a splice-switching oligonucleotide without causing significant toxicity. These observations suggest that selected small molecule enhancers may eventually be of value in oligonucleotide-based therapeutics. PMID:25662226

  18. Small molecule screening at Helmholtz Zentrum München - from biology to molecules. (United States)

    Schorpp, Kenji; Hadian, Kamyar


    Within the last few years the Helmholtz Zentrum München has established several initiatives enabling the translation of basic research results into discovery of novel small molecules that affect pathomechanisms of chronic and complex diseases. Here, one of the main operations is the Assay Development and Screening Platform (ADSP) that has state-of-the-art equipment for compound screening and provides knowledge in a variety of biochemical or cell-based phenotypic assays. In particular, ADSP has a strong focus on complex assays such as high-content screening in stem cells that are likely to provide an innovative approach complementary to biochemical assays for the discovery of novel small molecules modulating key biological processes.

  19. Xyloketal-derived small molecules show protective effect by decreasing mutant Huntingtin protein aggregates in Caenorhabditis elegans model of Huntington’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeng YX


    Full Text Available Yixuan Zeng,1,2,* Wenyuan Guo,1,* Guangqing Xu,3 Qinmei Wang,4 Luyang Feng,1,2 Simei Long,1 Fengyin Liang,1 Yi Huang,1 Xilin Lu,1 Shichang Li,5 Jiebin Zhou,5 Jean-Marc Burgunder,6 Jiyan Pang,5 Zhong Pei1,2 1Department of Neurology, National Key Clinical Department and Key Discipline of Neurology, Guangdong Key Laboratory for Diagnosis and Treatment of Major Neurological Disease, The First Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, 2Guangzhou Center, Chinese Huntington’s Disease Network, 3Department of Rehabilitation, The First Affiliated Hospital, 4Key laboratory on Assisted Circulation, Ministry of Health, Department of Cardiovascular Medicine of the First Affiliated Hospital, 5School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong, People’s Republic of China; 6Swiss Huntington’s Disease Center, Department of Neurology, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland *These authors contributed equally to this work Abstract: Huntington’s disease is an autosomal-dominant neurodegenerative disorder, with chorea as the most prominent manifestation. The disease is caused by abnormal expansion of CAG codon repeats in the IT15 gene, which leads to the expression of a glutamine-rich protein named mutant Huntingtin (Htt. Because of its devastating disease burden and lack of valid treatment, development of more effective therapeutics for Huntington’s disease is urgently required. Xyloketal B, a natural product from mangrove fungus, has shown protective effects against toxicity in other neurodegenerative disease models such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. To identify potential neuroprotective molecules for Huntington’s disease, six derivatives of xyloketal B were screened in a Caenorhabditis elegans Huntington’s disease model; all six compounds showed a protective effect. Molecular docking studies indicated that compound 1 could bind to residues GLN369 and GLN393 of the mutant Htt protein, forming a

  20. Prediction of small molecule binding property of protein domains with Bayesian classifiers based on Markov chains. (United States)

    Bulashevska, Alla; Stein, Martin; Jackson, David; Eils, Roland


    Accurate computational methods that can help to predict biological function of a protein from its sequence are of great interest to research biologists and pharmaceutical companies. One approach to assume the function of proteins is to predict the interactions between proteins and other molecules. In this work, we propose a machine learning method that uses a primary sequence of a domain to predict its propensity for interaction with small molecules. By curating the Pfam database with respect to the small molecule binding ability of its component domains, we have constructed a dataset of small molecule binding and non-binding domains. This dataset was then used as training set to learn a Bayesian classifier, which should distinguish members of each class. The domain sequences of both classes are modelled with Markov chains. In a Jack-knife test, our classification procedure achieved the predictive accuracies of 77.2% and 66.7% for binding and non-binding classes respectively. We demonstrate the applicability of our classifier by using it to identify previously unknown small molecule binding domains. Our predictions are available as supplementary material and can provide very useful information to drug discovery specialists. Given the ubiquitous and essential role small molecules play in biological processes, our method is important for identifying pharmaceutically relevant components of complete proteomes. The software is available from the author upon request.

  1. A new class of pluripotent stem cell cytotoxic small molecules.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Richards

    Full Text Available A major concern in Pluripotent Stem Cell (PSC-derived cell replacement therapy is the risk of teratoma formation from contaminating undifferentiated cells. Removal of undifferentiated cells from differentiated cultures is an essential step before PSC-based cell therapies can be safely deployed in a clinical setting. We report a group of novel small molecules that are cytotoxic to PSCs. Our data indicates that these molecules are specific and potent in their activity allowing rapid eradication of undifferentiated cells. Experiments utilizing mixed PSC and primary human neuronal and cardiomyocyte cultures demonstrate that up to a 6-fold enrichment for specialized cells can be obtained without adversely affecting cell viability and function. Several structural variants were synthesized to identify key functional groups and to improve specificity and efficacy. Comparative microarray analysis and ensuing RNA knockdown studies revealed involvement of the PERK/ATF4/DDIT3 ER stress pathway. Surprisingly, cell death following ER stress induction was associated with a concomitant decrease in endogenous ROS levels in PSCs. Undifferentiated cells treated with these molecules preceding transplantation fail to form teratomas in SCID mice. Furthermore, these molecules remain non-toxic and non-teratogenic to zebrafish embryos suggesting that they may be safely used in vivo.

  2. Antidiabetic effects of glucokinase regulatory protein small-molecule disruptors (United States)

    Lloyd, David J.; St Jean, David J.; Kurzeja, Robert J. M.; Wahl, Robert C.; Michelsen, Klaus; Cupples, Rod; Chen, Michelle; Wu, John; Sivits, Glenn; Helmering, Joan; Komorowski, Renée; Ashton, Kate S.; Pennington, Lewis D.; Fotsch, Christopher; Vazir, Mukta; Chen, Kui; Chmait, Samer; Zhang, Jiandong; Liu, Longbin; Norman, Mark H.; Andrews, Kristin L.; Bartberger, Michael D.; van, Gwyneth; Galbreath, Elizabeth J.; Vonderfecht, Steven L.; Wang, Minghan; Jordan, Steven R.; Véniant, Murielle M.; Hale, Clarence


    Glucose homeostasis is a vital and complex process, and its disruption can cause hyperglycaemia and type II diabetes mellitus. Glucokinase (GK), a key enzyme that regulates glucose homeostasis, converts glucose to glucose-6-phosphate in pancreatic β-cells, liver hepatocytes, specific hypothalamic neurons, and gut enterocytes. In hepatocytes, GK regulates glucose uptake and glycogen synthesis, suppresses glucose production, and is subject to the endogenous inhibitor GK regulatory protein (GKRP). During fasting, GKRP binds, inactivates and sequesters GK in the nucleus, which removes GK from the gluconeogenic process and prevents a futile cycle of glucose phosphorylation. Compounds that directly hyperactivate GK (GK activators) lower blood glucose levels and are being evaluated clinically as potential therapeutics for the treatment of type II diabetes mellitus. However, initial reports indicate that an increased risk of hypoglycaemia is associated with some GK activators. To mitigate the risk of hypoglycaemia, we sought to increase GK activity by blocking GKRP. Here we describe the identification of two potent small-molecule GK-GKRP disruptors (AMG-1694 and AMG-3969) that normalized blood glucose levels in several rodent models of diabetes. These compounds potently reversed the inhibitory effect of GKRP on GK activity and promoted GK translocation both in vitro (isolated hepatocytes) and in vivo (liver). A co-crystal structure of full-length human GKRP in complex with AMG-1694 revealed a previously unknown binding pocket in GKRP distinct from that of the phosphofructose-binding site. Furthermore, with AMG-1694 and AMG-3969 (but not GK activators), blood glucose lowering was restricted to diabetic and not normoglycaemic animals. These findings exploit a new cellular mechanism for lowering blood glucose levels with reduced potential for hypoglycaemic risk in patients with type II diabetes mellitus.

  3. Central nervous system penetration for small molecule therapeutic agents does not increase in multiple sclerosis- and Alzheimer's disease-related animal models despite reported blood-brain barrier disruption. (United States)

    Cheng, Ziqiang; Zhang, Jinqiang; Liu, Houfu; Li, Yi; Zhao, Yonggang; Yang, Eric


    Therapy for central nervous system (CNS) diseases requires drugs that can cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB). BBB disruption has been reported in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) and the related animal models as evidenced by increased infiltration of inflammatory cells or increased staining of Igs in the central nervous system. Although CNS penetration of therapeutic agents under pathological conditions has rarely been investigated, it is commonly assumed that BBB disruption may lead to enhanced CNS penetration and also provide a "window of opportunity" through which drugs that do not normally cross BBB are able to do so. In this article, we have compared brain penetration of eight small molecules in naive animals and experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) mice, streptozotocin-induced mice, and TASTPM transgenic mice. The tool compounds are lipophilic transcellular drugs [GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)-A, GSK-B, GSK-C, and naproxen], lipophilic P-glycoprotein (P-gp) substrates (amprenavir and loperamide), and hydrophilic paracellular compounds (sodium fluorescein and atenolol). Our data showed that rate and extent of CNS penetration for lipophilic transcellular drugs and P-gp substrates are similar in naive and all tested animal models. The brain penetration for paracellular drugs in EAE mice is transiently increased but similar to that in naive mice at steady state. Our data suggest that, despite reported BBB disruption, CNS penetration for small molecule therapeutic agents does not increase in MS- and AD-related animal models.

  4. Stabilization of protein-protein interactions by small molecules. (United States)

    Giordanetto, Fabrizio; Schäfer, Anja; Ottmann, Christian


    Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) are implicated in every disease and mastering the ability to influence PPIs with small molecules would considerably enlarge the druggable genome. Whereas inhibition of PPIs has repeatedly been shown to work successfully, targeted stabilization of PPIs is underrepresented in the literature. This is all the more surprising because natural products like FK506, rapamycin, brefeldin, forskolin and fusicoccin confer their physiological activity by stabilizing specific PPIs. However, recently a number of very interesting synthetic molecules have been reported from drug discovery projects that indeed achieve their desired activities by stabilizing either homo- or hetero-oligomeric complexes of their target proteins. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Diffusion of Small Molecules in Metal Organic Framework Materials (United States)

    Canepa, Pieremanuele; Nijem, Nour; Chabal, Yves J.; Thonhauser, T.


    Ab initio simulations are combined with in situ infrared spectroscopy to unveil the molecular transport of H2, CO2, and H2O in the metal organic framework MOF-74-Mg. Our study uncovers—at the atomistic level—the major factors governing the transport mechanism of these small molecules. In particular, we identify four key diffusion mechanisms and calculate the corresponding diffusion barriers, which are nicely confirmed by time-resolved infrared experiments. We also answer a long-standing question about the existence of secondary adsorption sites for the guest molecules, and we show how those sites affect the macroscopic diffusion properties. Our findings are important to gain a fundamental understanding of the diffusion processes in these nanoporous materials, with direct implications for the usability of MOFs in gas sequestration and storage applications.

  6. An autonomous chemically fuelled small-molecule motor (United States)

    Wilson, Miriam R.; Solà, Jordi; Carlone, Armando; Goldup, Stephen M.; Lebrasseur, Nathalie; Leigh, David A.


    Molecular machines are among the most complex of all functional molecules and lie at the heart of nearly every biological process. A number of synthetic small-molecule machines have been developed, including molecular muscles, synthesizers, pumps, walkers, transporters and light-driven and electrically driven rotary motors. However, although biological molecular motors are powered by chemical gradients or the hydrolysis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), so far there are no synthetic small-molecule motors that can operate autonomously using chemical energy (that is, the components move with net directionality as long as a chemical fuel is present). Here we describe a system in which a small molecular ring (macrocycle) is continuously transported directionally around a cyclic molecular track when powered by irreversible reactions of a chemical fuel, 9-fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl chloride. Key to the design is that the rate of reaction of this fuel with reactive sites on the cyclic track is faster when the macrocycle is far from the reactive site than when it is near to it. We find that a bulky pyridine-based catalyst promotes carbonate-forming reactions that ratchet the displacement of the macrocycle away from the reactive sites on the track. Under reaction conditions where both attachment and cleavage of the 9-fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl groups occur through different processes, and the cleavage reaction occurs at a rate independent of macrocycle location, net directional rotation of the molecular motor continues for as long as unreacted fuel remains. We anticipate that autonomous chemically fuelled molecular motors will find application as engines in molecular nanotechnology.

  7. Spectroscopic and dynamical studies of highly energized small polyatomic molecules

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Field, R.W.; Silbey, R.J. [Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge (United States)


    The authors have initiated a program to perform spectroscopic and dynamic studies of small molecules. Large amplitude motions in excited acetylene were discussed along with plans to record the dispersed fluorescence (DF) and the stimulated emission pumping (SEP) spectra. SEP spectra were reported for the formyl radical. A Fourier transform spectrometer was discussed with respect to its ability to probe the structure of radicals. This instrument is capable of performing studies using various techniques such as magnetic rotation spectroscopy and sub-Doppler sideband-OODR Zeman (SOODRZ) spectroscopy.

  8. Spectra and dynamics of small molecules Alexander von Humboldt lectures

    CERN Document Server

    Field, Robert W


    These seven lectures are intended to serve as an introduction for beginning graduate students to the spectra of small molecules. The author succeeds in illustrating the concepts by using language and metaphors that capture and elegantly convey simple insights into dynamics that lie beyond archival molecular constants. The lectures can simultaneously be viewed as a collection of interlocking special topics that have fascinated the author and his students over the years. Though neither a textbook nor a scholarly monograph, the book provides an illuminating perspective that will benefit students and researchers alike.

  9. Novel targets and derived small molecule inhibitors in multiple myeloma. (United States)

    Podar, Klaus


    Recent research advances have defined a key role of the bone marrow (BM) in multiple myeloma (MM) pathogenesis thereby leading to new treatment paradigms, which aim to target both the tumor cell as well as its BM microenvironment. The incorporation of thalidomide, bortezomib, and lenalidomide into conventional cytotoxic and transplantation regimens in relapsed and refractory, but also in newly diagnosed MM has changed treatment options during the last decade. However, MM remains still incurable. Ongoing translational research aims to identify additional therapeutic targets and to design derived agents, predominantly small molecule inhibitors, with higher potency and less toxicity to further improve MM patient outcome and to overcome drug resistance.

  10. Emissive nanotubes from templated self-assembly of small molecules (United States)

    Tseng, Kuo-Pi; Tsai, Yu-Tang; Shyue, Jing-Jong; Raffy, Guillaume; Del Guerzo, André; Wong, Ken-Tsung; Bassani, Dario M.


    We report the use of supramolecular interactions to promote the AAO-templated formation of emissive nanotubes based on small organic molecules bearing complementary hydrogen-bonding sites. Nanotubes emitting blue, green, and red light were obtained using appropriate chromophores, whereas a mixture of blue and green chromophores afforded nanotubes emitting white light. Further characterization revealed that the emission from the nanotubes is polarized, indicating a preferential orientation of the chromophores. Aqueous dispersions of nanotubes showed that scrambling of the chromophores is minimal, and that it is possible to prepare samples in which many nanotubes of different colors are present in close proximity.

  11. A guest molecule-host cavity fitting algorithm to mine PDB for small molecule targets. (United States)

    Byrem, William C; Armstead, Stephen C; Kobayashi, Shunji; Eckenhoff, Roderic G; Eckmann, David M


    Inhaled anesthetic molecule occupancy of a protein internal cavity depends in part on the volumes of the guest molecule and the host site. Current algorithms to determine volume and surface area of cavities in proteins whose structures have been determined and cataloged make no allowance for shape or small degrees of shape adjustment to accommodate a guest. We developed an algorithm to determine spheroid dimensions matching cavity volume and surface area and applied it to screen the cavities of 6,658 nonredundant structures stored in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) for potential targets of halothane (2-bromo-2-chloro-1,1,1-trifluoroethane). Our algorithm determined sizes of prolate and oblate spheroids matching dimensions of each cavity found. If those spheroids could accommodate halothane (radius 2.91 A) as a guest, we determined the packing coefficient. 394,766 total cavities were identified. Of 58,681 cavities satisfying the fit criteria for halothane, 11,902 cavities had packing coefficients in the range of 0.46-0.64. This represents 20.3% of cavities large enough to hold halothane, 3.0% of all cavities processed, and found in 2,432 protein structures. Our algorithm incorporates shape dependence to screen guest-host relationships for potential small molecule occupancy of protein cavities. Proteins with large numbers of such cavities are more likely to be functionally altered by halothane.

  12. A general strategy to construct small molecule biosensors in eukaryotes (United States)

    Feng, Justin; Jester, Benjamin W; Tinberg, Christine E; Mandell, Daniel J; Antunes, Mauricio S; Chari, Raj; Morey, Kevin J; Rios, Xavier; Medford, June I; Church, George M; Fields, Stanley; Baker, David


    Biosensors for small molecules can be used in applications that range from metabolic engineering to orthogonal control of transcription. Here, we produce biosensors based on a ligand-binding domain (LBD) by using a method that, in principle, can be applied to any target molecule. The LBD is fused to either a fluorescent protein or a transcriptional activator and is destabilized by mutation such that the fusion accumulates only in cells containing the target ligand. We illustrate the power of this method by developing biosensors for digoxin and progesterone. Addition of ligand to yeast, mammalian, or plant cells expressing a biosensor activates transcription with a dynamic range of up to ~100-fold. We use the biosensors to improve the biotransformation of pregnenolone to progesterone in yeast and to regulate CRISPR activity in mammalian cells. This work provides a general methodology to develop biosensors for a broad range of molecules in eukaryotes. DOI: PMID:26714111

  13. Signal-amplification detection of small molecules by use of Mg2+-dependent DNAzyme. (United States)

    Guo, Zhijun; Wang, Jiahai; Wang, Erkang


    Because small molecules can be beneficial or toxic in biology and the environment, specific and sensitive detection of small molecules is one of the most important objectives of the scientific community. In this study, new signal amplification assays for detection of small molecules based on Mg(2+)-dependent DNAzyme were developed. A cleavable DNA substrate containing a ribonucleotide, the ends of which were labeled with black hole quencher (BHQ) and 6-carboxyfluorescein (FAM), was used for fluorescence detection. When the small molecule of interest is added to the assay solution, the Mg(2+)-dependent DNAzyme is activated, facilitating hybridization between the Mg(2+)-dependent DNAzyme and the DNA substrate. Binding of the substrate to the DNAzyme structure results in hydrolytic cleavage of the substrate in the presence of Mg(2+) ions. The fluorescence signal was amplified by continuous cleavage of the enzyme substrate. Ochratoxin A (OTA) and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) were used as model analytes in these experiments. This method can detect OTA specifically with a detection limit as low as 140 pmol L(-1) and detect ATP specifically with a detection limit as low as 13 nmol L(-1). Moreover, this method is potentially extendable to detection of other small molecules which are able to dissociate the aptamer from the DNAzyme, leading to activation of the DNAzyme.

  14. Stem cells and small molecule screening: haploid embryonic stem cells as a new tool

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Bi WU; Wei LI; Liu WANG; Zhong-hua LIU; Xiao-yang ZHAO


    Stem cells can both self-renew and differentiate into various cell types under certain conditions,which makes them a good model for development and disease studies.Recently,chemical approaches have been widely applied in stem cell biology by promoting stem cell self-renewal,proliferation,differentiation and somatic cell reprogramming using specific small molecules.Conversely,stem cells and their derivatives also provide an efficient and robust platform for small molecule and drug screening.Here,we review the current research and applications of small molecules that modulate stem cell self-renewal and differentiation and improve reprogramming,as well as the applications that use stem cells as a tool for small molecule screening.Moreover,we introduce the recent advance in haploid embryonic stem cells research.Haploid embryonic stem cells maintain haploidy and stable growth over extensive passages,possess the ability to differentiate into all three germ layers in vitro and in vivo,and contribute to the germlines of chimeras when injected into blastocysts.Androgenetic haploid stem cells can also be used in place of sperm to produce fertile progeny after intracytoplasmic injection into mature oocytes.Such characteristics demonstrate that haploid stem cells are a new approach for genetic studies at both the cellular and animal levels and that they are a valuable platform for future small molecule screening.

  15. Biophysical methods in drug discovery from small molecule to pharmaceutical. (United States)

    Holdgate, Geoffrey; Geschwindner, Stefan; Breeze, Alex; Davies, Gareth; Colclough, Nicola; Temesi, David; Ward, Lara


    Biophysical methods have become established in many areas of drug discovery. Application of these methods was once restricted to a relatively small number of scientists using specialized, low throughput technologies and methods. Now, automated high-throughput instruments are to be found in a growing number of laboratories. Many biophysical methods are capable of measuring the equilibrium binding constants between pairs of molecules crucial for molecular recognition processes, encompassing protein-protein, protein-small molecule, and protein-nucleic acid interactions, and several can be used to measure the kinetic or thermodynamic components controlling these biological processes. For a full characterization of a binding process, determinations of stoichiometry, binding mode, and any conformational changes associated with such interactions are also required. The suite of biophysical methods that are now available represents a powerful toolbox of techniques which can effectively deliver this full characterization.The aim of this chapter is to provide the reader with an overview of the drug discovery process and how biophysical methods, such as surface plasmon resonance (SPR), isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC), nuclear magnetic resonance, mass spectrometry (MS), and thermal unfolding methods can answer specific questions in order to influence project progression and outcomes. The selection of these examples is based upon the experiences of the authors at AstraZeneca, and relevant approaches are highlighted where they have utility in a particular drug discovery scenario.

  16. Unique small molecule entry inhibitors of hemorrhagic fever arenaviruses. (United States)

    Lee, Andrew M; Rojek, Jillian M; Spiropoulou, Christina F; Gundersen, Anette T; Jin, Wei; Shaginian, Alex; York, Joanne; Nunberg, Jack H; Boger, Dale L; Oldstone, Michael B A; Kunz, Stefan


    Viral hemorrhagic fevers caused by the arenaviruses Lassa virus in Africa and Machupo, Guanarito, Junin, and Sabia virus in South America are among the most devastating emerging human diseases with fatality rates of 15-35% and a limited antiviral therapeutic repertoire available. Here we used high throughput screening of synthetic combinatorial small molecule libraries to identify inhibitors of arenavirus infection using pseudotyped virion particles bearing the glycoproteins (GPs) of highly pathogenic arenaviruses. Our screening efforts resulted in the discovery of a series of novel small molecule inhibitors of viral entry that are highly active against both Old World and New World hemorrhagic arenaviruses. We observed potent inhibition of infection of human and primate cells with live hemorrhagic arenaviruses (IC(50)=500-800 nm). Investigations of the mechanism of action revealed that the candidate compounds efficiently block pH-dependent fusion by the arenavirus GPs (IC(50) of 200-350 nm). Although our lead compounds were potent against phylogenetically distant arenaviruses, they did not show activity against other enveloped viruses with class I viral fusion proteins, indicating specificity for arenavirus GP-mediated membrane fusion.

  17. Identifying a Small Molecule Blocking Antigen Presentation in Autoimmune Thyroiditis. (United States)

    Li, Cheuk Wun; Menconi, Francesca; Osman, Roman; Mezei, Mihaly; Jacobson, Eric M; Concepcion, Erlinda; David, Chella S; Kastrinsky, David B; Ohlmeyer, Michael; Tomer, Yaron


    We previously showed that an HLA-DR variant containing arginine at position 74 of the DRβ1 chain (DRβ1-Arg74) is the specific HLA class II variant conferring risk for autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITD). We also identified 5 thyroglobulin (Tg) peptides that bound to DRβ1-Arg74. We hypothesized that blocking the binding of these peptides to DRβ1-Arg74 could block the continuous T-cell activation in thyroiditis needed to maintain the autoimmune response to the thyroid. The aim of the current study was to identify small molecules that can block T-cell activation by Tg peptides presented within DRβ1-Arg74 pockets. We screened a large and diverse library of compounds and identified one compound, cepharanthine that was able to block peptide binding to DRβ1-Arg74. We then showed that Tg.2098 is the dominant peptide when inducing experimental autoimmune thyroiditis (EAT) in NOD mice expressing human DRβ1-Arg74. Furthermore, cepharanthine blocked T-cell activation by thyroglobulin peptides, in particular Tg.2098 in mice that were induced with EAT. For the first time we identified a small molecule that can block Tg peptide binding and presentation to T-cells in autoimmune thyroiditis. If confirmed cepharanthine could potentially have a role in treating human AITD.

  18. Small molecules reveal an alternative mechanism of Bax activation. (United States)

    Brahmbhatt, Hetal; Uehling, David; Al-Awar, Rima; Leber, Brian; Andrews, David


    The pro-apoptotic protein Bax commits a cell to death by permeabilizing the mitochondrial outer membrane (MOM). To obtain small-molecule probes for elucidating the molecular mechanism(s) of Bax activation, we screened for compounds that induced Bax-mediated liposome permeabilization. We identified five structurally different small molecules that promoted both Bax targeting to and oligomerization at membranes. All five compounds initiated Bax oligomerization in the absence of membranes by a mechanism unlike Bax activation by Bcl-2 homology 3 domain (BH3) proteins. Some of the compounds induced Bax/Bak-dependent apoptosis in cells. Activation of Bax by the most active compound was poorly inhibited by the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-XL and requires a cysteine residue at position 126 of Bax that is not required for activation by BH3 proteins. Our results reveal a novel pathway for Bax activation independent of pro-apoptotic BH3 proteins that may have important implications for the regulation of Bax activity in cells. © 2016 The Author(s).

  19. Small-Molecule Inhibitors of the Type III Secretion System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lingling Gu


    Full Text Available Drug-resistant pathogens have presented increasing challenges to the discovery and development of new antibacterial agents. The type III secretion system (T3SS, existing in bacterial chromosomes or plasmids, is one of the most complicated protein secretion systems. T3SSs of animal and plant pathogens possess many highly conserved main structural components comprised of about 20 proteins. Many Gram-negative bacteria carry T3SS as a major virulence determinant, and using the T3SS, the bacteria secrete and inject effector proteins into target host cells, triggering disease symptoms. Therefore, T3SS has emerged as an attractive target for antimicrobial therapeutics. In recent years, many T3SS-targeting small-molecule inhibitors have been discovered; these inhibitors prevent the bacteria from injecting effector proteins and from causing pathophysiology in host cells. Targeting the virulence of Gram-negative pathogens, rather than their survival, is an innovative and promising approach that may greatly reduce selection pressures on pathogens to develop drug-resistant mutations. This article summarizes recent progress in the search for promising small-molecule T3SS inhibitors that target the secretion and translocation of bacterial effector proteins.

  20. Potential of Nonfullerene Small Molecules with High Photovoltaic Performance. (United States)

    Li, Wanning; Yao, Huifeng; Zhang, Hao; Li, Sunsun; Hou, Jianhui


    Over the past decades, fullerene derivatives have become the most successful electron acceptors in organic solar cells (OSCs) and have achieved great progress, with power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of over 11 %. However, fullerenes have some drawbacks, such as weak absorption, limited energy-level tunability, and morphological instability. In addition, fullerene-based OSCs usually suffer from large energy losses of over 0.7 eV, which limits further improvements in the PCE. Recently, nonfullerene small molecules have emerged as promising electron acceptors in OSCs. Their highly tunable absorption spectra and molecular energy levels have enabled fine optimization of the resulting devices, and the highest PCE has surpassed 12 %. Furthermore, several studies have shown that OSCs based on small-molecule acceptors (SMA) have very efficient charge generation and transport efficiency at relatively low energy losses of below 0.6 eV, which suggests great potential for the further improvement of OSCs. In this focus review, we analyze the challenges and potential of SMA-based OSCs and discuss molecular design strategies for highly efficient SMAs. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  1. Stability of lyophilized human platelets loaded with small molecule carbohydrates. (United States)

    Wang, J X; Yang, C; Wan, W; Liu, M X; Ren, S P; Quan, G B; Han, Y


    Long-term preservation of platelets is a great challenge for blood transfusion centers, due to the required narrow storage temperature arange (22 ± 2 degree C). Short shelf life and potential bacterial growth often lead to the shortage of high-quality platelets. Freeze-dried preservation is thus believed to be a potential solution for long-term platelet storage without losing the hemostasis function. Here we report a new platelet preservation method, which uses small molecule carbohydrates to extend storage time and to maintain platelet function. The activities of lyophilized platelets that were stabilized with small molecule carbohydrate (e.g., cell viability, mean platelet volume, activation characteristics, and aggregation kinetics) were maintained after storage of 30, 60, and 90 days at room temperature, 4 degree C, and -20 degree C. The recovery of freeze-dried platelets was 87 percent in comparison to fresh platelets. The mean platelet volume of rehydrated platelets increased (from 6.8 fl to 8.0 fl). About 40 percent of rehydrated platelets was in the early-activated stage (PCA-1 positive) and 30 percent was in the terminal-activated stage (CD62P positive). The cell viability was about 60 percent as measured with CMFDA vital probes. The aggregation rate of rehydrated platelets after 90-day storage was similar to fresh platelets stored at 22 degree C ± 2 degree C.

  2. Roles of small molecules in somatic cell reprogramming. (United States)

    Su, Jian-bin; Pei, Duan-qing; Qin, Bao-ming


    The Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine 2012 was awarded to Sir John B GURDON and Shinya YAMANAKA for their discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent. This event reaffirms the importance of research on cell fate plasticity and the technology progress in the stem cell field and regenerative medicine. Indeed, reprogramming technology has developed at a dazzling speed within the past 6 years, yet we are still at the early stages of understanding the mechanisms of cell fate identity. This is particularly true in the case of human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), which lack reliable standards in the evaluation of their fidelity and safety prior to their application. Along with the genetic approaches, small molecules nowadays become convenient tools for modulating endogenous protein functions and regulating key cellular processes, including the mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition, metabolism, signal transduction and epigenetics. Moreover, small molecules may affect not only the efficiency of clone formation but also the quality of the resulting cells. With increasing availability of such chemicals, we can better understand the biology of stems cells and further improve the technology of generation of stem cells.

  3. Roles of small molecules in somatic cell reprogramming

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jian-bin SU; Duan-qing PEI; Bao-ming QIN


    The Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine 2012 was awarded to Sir John B GURDON and Shinya YAMANAKA for their discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent.This event reaffirms the importance of research on cell fate plasticity and the technology progress in the stem cell field and regenerative medicine.Indeed,reprogramming technology has developed at a dazzling speed within the past 6 years,yet we are still at the early stages of understanding the mechanisms of cell fate identity.This is particularly true in the case of human induced pluripotent stem ceils (iPSCs),which lack reliable standards in the evaluation of their fidelity and safety prior to their application.Along with the genetic approaches,small molecules nowadays become convenient tools for modulating endogenous protein functions and regulating key cellular processes,including the mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition,metabolism,signal transduction and epigenetics.Moreover,small molecules may affect not only the efficiency of clone formation but also the quality of the resulting cells.With increasing availability of such chemicals,we can better understand the biology of stems cells and further improve the technology of generation of stem cells.

  4. Reprogramming the assembly of unmodified DNA with a small molecule (United States)

    Avakyan, Nicole; Greschner, Andrea A.; Aldaye, Faisal; Serpell, Christopher J.; Toader, Violeta; Petitjean, Anne; Sleiman, Hanadi F.


    The ability of DNA to store and encode information arises from base pairing of the four-letter nucleobase code to form a double helix. Expanding this DNA ‘alphabet’ by synthetic incorporation of new bases can introduce new functionalities and enable the formation of novel nucleic acid structures. However, reprogramming the self-assembly of existing nucleobases presents an alternative route to expand the structural space and functionality of nucleic acids. Here we report the discovery that a small molecule, cyanuric acid, with three thymine-like faces, reprogrammes the assembly of unmodified poly(adenine) (poly(A)) into stable, long and abundant fibres with a unique internal structure. Poly(A) DNA, RNA and peptide nucleic acid (PNA) all form these assemblies. Our studies are consistent with the association of adenine and cyanuric acid units into a hexameric rosette, which brings together poly(A) triplexes with a subsequent cooperative polymerization. Fundamentally, this study shows that small hydrogen-bonding molecules can be used to induce the assembly of nucleic acids in water, which leads to new structures from inexpensive and readily available materials.

  5. Molecular Responses to Small Regulating Molecules against Huanglongbing Disease (United States)

    Martinelli, Federico; Dolan, David; Fileccia, Veronica; Reagan, Russell L.; Phu, My; Spann, Timothy M.; McCollum, Thomas G.; Dandekar, Abhaya M.


    Huanglongbing (HLB; citrus greening) is the most devastating disease of citrus worldwide. No cure is yet available for this disease and infected trees generally decline after several months. Disease management depends on early detection of symptoms and chemical control of insect vectors. In this work, different combinations of organic compounds were tested for the ability to modulate citrus molecular responses to HLB disease beneficially. Three small-molecule regulating compounds were tested: 1) L-arginine, 2) 6-benzyl-adenine combined with gibberellins, and 3) sucrose combined with atrazine. Each treatment contained K-phite mineral solution and was tested at two different concentrations. Two trials were conducted: one in the greenhouse and the other in the orchard. In the greenhouse study, responses of 42 key genes involved in sugar and starch metabolism, hormone-related pathways, biotic stress responses, and secondary metabolism in treated and untreated mature leaves were analyzed. TGA5 was significantly induced by arginine. Benzyladenine and gibberellins enhanced two important genes involved in biotic stress responses: WRKY54 and WRKY59. Sucrose combined with atrazine mainly upregulated key genes involved in carbohydrate metabolism such as sucrose-phosphate synthase, sucrose synthase, starch synthase, and α-amylase. Atrazine also affected expression of some key genes involved in systemic acquired resistance such as EDS1, TGA6, WRKY33, and MYC2. Several treatments upregulated HSP82, which might help protect protein folding and integrity. A subset of key genes was chosen as biomarkers for molecular responses to treatments under field conditions. GPT2 was downregulated by all small-molecule treatments. Arginine-induced genes involved in systemic acquired resistance included PR1, WRKY70, and EDS1. These molecular data encourage long-term application of treatments that combine these regulating molecules in field trials. PMID:27459099

  6. Molecular Responses to Small Regulating Molecules against Huanglongbing Disease. (United States)

    Martinelli, Federico; Dolan, David; Fileccia, Veronica; Reagan, Russell L; Phu, My; Spann, Timothy M; McCollum, Thomas G; Dandekar, Abhaya M


    Huanglongbing (HLB; citrus greening) is the most devastating disease of citrus worldwide. No cure is yet available for this disease and infected trees generally decline after several months. Disease management depends on early detection of symptoms and chemical control of insect vectors. In this work, different combinations of organic compounds were tested for the ability to modulate citrus molecular responses to HLB disease beneficially. Three small-molecule regulating compounds were tested: 1) L-arginine, 2) 6-benzyl-adenine combined with gibberellins, and 3) sucrose combined with atrazine. Each treatment contained K-phite mineral solution and was tested at two different concentrations. Two trials were conducted: one in the greenhouse and the other in the orchard. In the greenhouse study, responses of 42 key genes involved in sugar and starch metabolism, hormone-related pathways, biotic stress responses, and secondary metabolism in treated and untreated mature leaves were analyzed. TGA5 was significantly induced by arginine. Benzyladenine and gibberellins enhanced two important genes involved in biotic stress responses: WRKY54 and WRKY59. Sucrose combined with atrazine mainly upregulated key genes involved in carbohydrate metabolism such as sucrose-phosphate synthase, sucrose synthase, starch synthase, and α-amylase. Atrazine also affected expression of some key genes involved in systemic acquired resistance such as EDS1, TGA6, WRKY33, and MYC2. Several treatments upregulated HSP82, which might help protect protein folding and integrity. A subset of key genes was chosen as biomarkers for molecular responses to treatments under field conditions. GPT2 was downregulated by all small-molecule treatments. Arginine-induced genes involved in systemic acquired resistance included PR1, WRKY70, and EDS1. These molecular data encourage long-term application of treatments that combine these regulating molecules in field trials.

  7. Molecular Responses to Small Regulating Molecules against Huanglongbing Disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Federico Martinelli

    Full Text Available Huanglongbing (HLB; citrus greening is the most devastating disease of citrus worldwide. No cure is yet available for this disease and infected trees generally decline after several months. Disease management depends on early detection of symptoms and chemical control of insect vectors. In this work, different combinations of organic compounds were tested for the ability to modulate citrus molecular responses to HLB disease beneficially. Three small-molecule regulating compounds were tested: 1 L-arginine, 2 6-benzyl-adenine combined with gibberellins, and 3 sucrose combined with atrazine. Each treatment contained K-phite mineral solution and was tested at two different concentrations. Two trials were conducted: one in the greenhouse and the other in the orchard. In the greenhouse study, responses of 42 key genes involved in sugar and starch metabolism, hormone-related pathways, biotic stress responses, and secondary metabolism in treated and untreated mature leaves were analyzed. TGA5 was significantly induced by arginine. Benzyladenine and gibberellins enhanced two important genes involved in biotic stress responses: WRKY54 and WRKY59. Sucrose combined with atrazine mainly upregulated key genes involved in carbohydrate metabolism such as sucrose-phosphate synthase, sucrose synthase, starch synthase, and α-amylase. Atrazine also affected expression of some key genes involved in systemic acquired resistance such as EDS1, TGA6, WRKY33, and MYC2. Several treatments upregulated HSP82, which might help protect protein folding and integrity. A subset of key genes was chosen as biomarkers for molecular responses to treatments under field conditions. GPT2 was downregulated by all small-molecule treatments. Arginine-induced genes involved in systemic acquired resistance included PR1, WRKY70, and EDS1. These molecular data encourage long-term application of treatments that combine these regulating molecules in field trials.

  8. Comparative analyses of a small molecule/enzyme interaction by multiple users of Biacore technology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cannon, M.J.; Papalia, G.A.; Navratilova, I.; Fisher, R.J.; Roberts, L.R.; Worthy, K.M.; Stephen, A.G.; Marchesini, G.R.; Collins, E.J.; Casper, D.; Qiu, H.; Satpaev, D.; Liparoto, S.F.; Rice, D.A.; Gorshkova, I.; Darling, R.J.; Bennett, D.B.; Sekar, M.; Hommema, E.; Liang, A.M.; Day, E.S.; Inman, J.; Karlicek, S.H.; Ullrich, S.J.; Hodges, D.; Chu, T.; Sullivan, E.; Simpson, J.; Rafique, A.; Luginbühl, B.; Nyholm Westin, S.; Bynum, M.; Cachia, P.; Li, Y.J.; Kao, D.; Neurauter, A.; Wong, M.


    To gauge the experimental variability associated with Biacore analysis, 36 different investigators analyzed a small molecule/enzyme interaction under similar conditions. Acetazolamide (222 g/mol) binding to carbonic anhydrase II (CAII; 30,000 Da) was chosen as a model system. Both reagents were stab

  9. Discovery & development of small molecule allosteric modulators of glycoprotein hormone receptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Selvaraj G Nataraja


    Full Text Available Glycoprotein hormones, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH, luteinizing hormone (LH, and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH are heterodimeric proteins with a common subunit and hormone-specific subunit. These hormones are dominant regulators of reproduction and metabolic processes. Receptors for the glycoprotein hormones belong to the family of G-protein coupled receptors (GPCR. FSH receptor (FSHR and LH receptor (LHR are primarily expressed in somatic cells in ovary and testis to promote egg and sperm production in women & men respectively. TSH receptor (TSHR is expressed in thyroid cells and regulates the secretion of T3 & T4. Glycoprotein hormones bind to the large extracellular domain of the receptor and cause a conformational change in the receptor that leads to activation of more than one intracellular signaling pathway. Several small molecules have been described to activate/inhibit glycoprotein hormone receptors through allosteric sites of the receptor. Small molecule allosteric modulators have the potential to be administered orally to patients thus improving the convenience of treatment. It has been a challenge to develop a small molecule allosteric agonist for glycoprotein hormones that can mimic the agonistic effects of the large natural ligand to activate similar signaling pathways. However, in the past few years, there have been several promising reports describing distinct chemical series with improved potency in preclinical models. In parallel, proposal of new structural model for FSH receptor and in silico docking studies of small molecule ligands to glycoprotein hormone receptors provide a giant leap on the understanding of the mechanism of action of the natural ligands and new chemical entities on the receptors. This review will focus on the current status of small molecule allosteric modulators of glycoprotein hormone receptors, their effects on common signaling pathways in cells, their utility for clinical

  10. Proteoform-specific protein binding of small molecules in complex matrices (United States)

    Characterizing the specific binding between protein targets and small molecules is critically important for drug discovery. Conventional assays require isolation and purification of small molecules from complex matrices through multistep chromatographic fractionation, which may alter their original ...

  11. Small molecule semiconductors for high-efficiency organic photovoltaics. (United States)

    Lin, Yuze; Li, Yongfang; Zhan, Xiaowei


    Organic photovoltaic cells (OPVs) are a promising cost-effective alternative to silicon-based solar cells, and possess light-weight, low-cost, and flexibility advantages. Significant progress has been achieved in the development of novel photovoltaic materials and device structures in the last decade. Nowadays small molecular semiconductors for OPVs have attracted considerable attention, due to their advantages over their polymer counterparts, including well-defined molecular structure, definite molecular weight, and high purity without batch to batch variations. The highest power conversion efficiencies of OPVs based on small molecular donor/fullerene acceptors or polymeric donor/fullerene acceptors are up to 6.7% and 8.3%, respectively, and meanwhile nonfullerene acceptors have also exhibited some promising results. In this review we summarize the developments in small molecular donors, acceptors (fullerene derivatives and nonfullerene molecules), and donor-acceptor dyad systems for high-performance multilayer, bulk heterojunction, and single-component OPVs. We focus on correlations of molecular chemical structures with properties, such as absorption, energy levels, charge mobilities, and photovoltaic performances. This structure-property relationship analysis may guide rational structural design and evaluation of photovoltaic materials (253 references).

  12. A Small-Molecule Inhibitor of Lin28. (United States)

    Roos, Martina; Pradère, Ugo; Ngondo, Richard P; Behera, Alok; Allegrini, Sara; Civenni, Gianluca; Zagalak, Julian A; Marchand, Jean-Rémy; Menzi, Mirjam; Towbin, Harry; Scheuermann, Jörg; Neri, Dario; Caflisch, Amedeo; Catapano, Carlo V; Ciaudo, Constance; Hall, Jonathan


    New discoveries in RNA biology underscore a need for chemical tools to clarify their roles in pathophysiological mechanisms. In certain cancers, synthesis of the let-7 microRNA tumor suppressor is blocked by an RNA binding protein (RBP) Lin28, which docks onto a conserved sequence in let-7 precursor RNA molecules and prevents their maturation. Thus, the Lin28/let-7 interaction might be an attractive drug target, if not for the well-known difficulty in targeting RNA-protein interactions with drugs. Here, we describe a protein/RNA FRET assay using a GFP-Lin28 donor and a black-hole quencher (BHQ)-labeled let-7 acceptor, a fluorescent protein/quencher combination which is rarely used in screening despite favorable spectral properties. We tested 16 000 molecules and identified N-methyl-N-[3-(3-methyl[1,2,4]triazolo[4,3-b]pyridazin-6-yl)phenyl]acetamide, which blocked the Lin28/let-7 interaction, rescued let-7 processing and function in Lin28-expressing cancer cells, induced differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells, and reduced tumor-sphere formation by 22Rv1 and Huh7 cells. A biotinylated derivative captured Lin28 from cell lysates consistent with an on-target mechanism in cells, though the compound also showed some activity against bromodomains in selectivity assays. The Lin28/let-7 axis is presently of high interest not only for its role as a bistable switch in stem-cell biology but also because of its prominent roles in numerous diseases. We anticipate that much can be learned from the use of this first reported small molecule antagonist of Lin28, including the potential of the Lin28/let-7 interaction as a new drug target for selected cancers. Furthermore, this approach to assay development may be used to identify antagonists of other RBP/RNA interactions suspected to be operative in pathophysiological mechanisms.

  13. Coacervate delivery systems for proteins and small molecule drugs. (United States)

    Johnson, Noah R; Wang, Yadong


    Coacervates represent an exciting new class of drug delivery vehicles, developed in the past decade as carriers of small molecule drugs and proteins. This review summarizes several well-described coacervate systems, including: i) elastin-like peptides for delivery of anticancer therapeutics; ii) heparin-based coacervates with synthetic polycations for controlled growth factor delivery; iii) carboxymethyl chitosan aggregates for oral drug delivery; iv) Mussel adhesive protein and hyaluronic acid coacervates. Coacervates present advantages in their simple assembly and easy incorporation into tissue engineering scaffolds or as adjuncts to cell therapies. They are also amenable to functionalization such as for targeting or for enhancing the bioactivity of their cargo. These new drug carriers are anticipated to have broad applications and noteworthy impact in the near future.

  14. Measurement of small molecule diffusion with an optofluidic silicon chip. (United States)

    Ryckeboer, Eva; Vierendeels, Jan; Lee, Agnes; Werquin, Sam; Bienstman, Peter; Baets, Roel


    In this work we explore the micro-ring resonator platform to study the diffusion-driven mass transport of small molecules within microfluidic channels. The micro-ring resonators are integrated on a silicon-on-insulator photonic chip and combined with microfluidics in poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS). We apply a strong initial gradient in the solute concentration and use the micro-ring resonators to observe how this concentration evolves over time and space. This can be achieved by tracking the optical resonances of multiple micro-rings as they shift with changing solute concentration. Experiments are performed for both glucose and NaCl and at different temperatures. The measured concentration profiles are used to calculate the diffusion coefficient of both glucose and NaCl in water. The good agreement between measurement and theoretical prediction demonstrates the relevance of this method.

  15. Small-molecule potentiators for conventional antibiotics against Staphylococcus aureus. (United States)

    Vermote, Arno; Van Calenbergh, Serge


    Antimicrobial resistance constitutes a global health problem, while the discovery and development of novel antibiotics is stagnating. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, responsible for the establishment of recalcitrant, biofilm-related infections, is a well known and notorious example of a highly resistant micro organism. Since resistance development is unavoidable with conventional antibiotics that target bacterial viability, it is vital to develop alternative treatment options on top. Strategies aimed at more subtle manipulation of bacterial behavior have recently attracted attention. Here, we provide a literature overview of several small molecule potentiators for antibiotics, identified for the treatment of Staphylococcus aureus infection. Typically, these potentiators are not bactericidal by themselves and function either by reversing resistance mechanisms, by attenuating Staphylococcus aureus virulence, and/or by interfering with quorum sensing.

  16. Branched terthiophenes in organic electronics: from small molecules to polymers. (United States)

    Scheuble, Martin; Goll, Miriam; Ludwigs, Sabine


    A zoo of chemical structures is accessible when the branched unit 2,2':3',2″-terthiophene (3T) is included both in structurally well-defined small molecules and polymer-like architectures. The first part of this review article highlights literature on all-thiophene based branched oligomers including dendrimers as well as combinations of 3T-units with functional moieties for light-harvesting systems. Motivated by the perfectly branched macromolecular dendrimers both electropolymerization as well as chemical approaches are presented as methods for the preparation of branched polythiophenes with different branching densities. Structure-function relationships between the molecular architecture and optical and electronic properties are discussed throughout the article.

  17. Inhibition of HIV-1 Reverse Transcriptase Dimerization by Small Molecules. (United States)

    Tintori, Cristina; Corona, Angela; Esposito, Francesca; Brai, Annalaura; Grandi, Nicole; Ceresola, Elisa Rita; Clementi, Massimo; Canducci, Filippo; Tramontano, Enzo; Botta, Maurizio


    Because HIV-1 reverse transcriptase is an enzyme whose catalytic activity depends on its heterodimeric structure, this system could be a target for inhibitors that perturb the interactions between the protein subunits, p51 and p66. We previously demonstrated that the small molecule MAS0 reduced the association of the two RT subunits and simultaneously inhibited both the polymerase and ribonuclease H activities. In this study, some analogues of MAS0 were rationally selected by docking studies and evaluated in vitro for their ability to disrupt dimeric assembly. Two inhibitors were identified with improved activity compared to MAS0. This study lays the basis for the rational design of more potent inhibitors of RT dimerization.

  18. Small molecules as pro-apoptotic anticancer agents. (United States)

    Seneci, Pierfausto


    The quest for potent and selective targeted therapies in anticancer research is taking advantage of apoptosis-related mechanisms of action to identify a number of novel clinical candidates. This review is chemically focused on small molecules and deals with five target families that influence caspase-dependent apoptosis: caspase-3, Bcl-2 and IAP protein family members, p53 and the proteasome. Each target class is briefly described at first in terms of its involvement and relevance in tumor initiation and progression. Drug candidates currently undergoing clinical trials are then presented for each target class, followed by a quick summary of target-modulating chemotypes that have appeared in patent literature since 2006. Finally, future trends likely to become significant in apoptosis-targeted cancer therapies are presented and discussed.

  19. Catalytic in vivo protein knockdown by small-molecule PROTACs. (United States)

    Bondeson, Daniel P; Mares, Alina; Smith, Ian E D; Ko, Eunhwa; Campos, Sebastien; Miah, Afjal H; Mulholland, Katie E; Routly, Natasha; Buckley, Dennis L; Gustafson, Jeffrey L; Zinn, Nico; Grandi, Paola; Shimamura, Satoko; Bergamini, Giovanna; Faelth-Savitski, Maria; Bantscheff, Marcus; Cox, Carly; Gordon, Deborah A; Willard, Ryan R; Flanagan, John J; Casillas, Linda N; Votta, Bartholomew J; den Besten, Willem; Famm, Kristoffer; Kruidenier, Laurens; Carter, Paul S; Harling, John D; Churcher, Ian; Crews, Craig M


    The current predominant therapeutic paradigm is based on maximizing drug-receptor occupancy to achieve clinical benefit. This strategy, however, generally requires excessive drug concentrations to ensure sufficient occupancy, often leading to adverse side effects. Here, we describe major improvements to the proteolysis targeting chimeras (PROTACs) method, a chemical knockdown strategy in which a heterobifunctional molecule recruits a specific protein target to an E3 ubiquitin ligase, resulting in the target's ubiquitination and degradation. These compounds behave catalytically in their ability to induce the ubiquitination of super-stoichiometric quantities of proteins, providing efficacy that is not limited by equilibrium occupancy. We present two PROTACs that are capable of specifically reducing protein levels by >90% at nanomolar concentrations. In addition, mouse studies indicate that they provide broad tissue distribution and knockdown of the targeted protein in tumor xenografts. Together, these data demonstrate a protein knockdown system combining many of the favorable properties of small-molecule agents with the potent protein knockdown of RNAi and CRISPR.

  20. Small molecule inhibitors of HCV replication from Pomegranate (United States)

    Reddy, B. Uma; Mullick, Ranajoy; Kumar, Anuj; Sudha, Govindarajan; Srinivasan, Narayanaswamy; Das, Saumitra


    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is the causative agent of end-stage liver disease. Recent advances in the last decade in anti HCV treatment strategies have dramatically increased the viral clearance rate. However, several limitations are still associated, which warrant a great need of novel, safe and selective drugs against HCV infection. Towards this objective, we explored highly potent and selective small molecule inhibitors, the ellagitannins, from the crude extract of Pomegranate (Punica granatum) fruit peel. The pure compounds, punicalagin, punicalin, and ellagic acid isolated from the extract specifically blocked the HCV NS3/4A protease activity in vitro. Structural analysis using computational approach also showed that ligand molecules interact with the catalytic and substrate binding residues of NS3/4A protease, leading to inhibition of the enzyme activity. Further, punicalagin and punicalin significantly reduced the HCV replication in cell culture system. More importantly, these compounds are well tolerated ex vivo and`no observed adverse effect level' (NOAEL) was established upto an acute dose of 5000 mg/kg in BALB/c mice. Additionally, pharmacokinetics study showed that the compounds are bioavailable. Taken together, our study provides a proof-of-concept approach for the potential use of antiviral and non-toxic principle ellagitannins from pomegranate in prevention and control of HCV induced complications.

  1. Elucidating the germination transcriptional program using small molecules. (United States)

    Bassel, George W; Fung, Pauline; Chow, Tsz-fung Freeman; Foong, Justin A; Provart, Nicholas J; Cutler, Sean R


    The transition from seed to seedling is mediated by germination, a complex process that starts with imbibition and completes with radicle emergence. To gain insight into the transcriptional program mediating germination, previous studies have compared the transcript profiles of dry, dormant, and germinating after-ripened Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) seeds. While informative, these approaches did not distinguish the transcriptional responses due to imbibition, shifts in metabolism, or breaking of dormancy from those triggered by the initiation of germination. In this study, three mechanistically distinct small molecules that inhibit Arabidopsis seed germination (methotrexate, 2, 4-dinitrophenol, and cycloheximide) were identified using a small-molecule screen and used to probe the germination transcriptome. Germination-responsive transcripts were defined as those with significantly altered transcript abundance across all inhibitory treatments with respect to control germinating seeds, using data from ATH1 microarrays. This analysis identified numerous germination regulators as germination responsive, including the DELLA proteins GAI, RGA, and RGL3, the abscisic acid-insensitive proteins ABI4, ABI5, ABI8, and FRY1, and the gibberellin receptor GID1A. To help visualize these and other publicly available seed microarray data, we designed a seed mRNA expression browser using the electronic Fluorescent Pictograph platform. An overall decrease in gene expression and a 5-fold greater number of transcripts identified as statistically down-regulated in drug-inhibited seeds point to a role for mRNA degradation or turnover during seed germination. The genes identified in our study as responsive to germination define potential uncharacterized regulators of this process and provide a refined transcriptional signature for germinating Arabidopsis seeds.

  2. Inhibition of DNA glycosylases via small molecule purine analogs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron C Jacobs

    Full Text Available Following the formation of oxidatively-induced DNA damage, several DNA glycosylases are required to initiate repair of the base lesions that are formed. Recently, NEIL1 and other DNA glycosylases, including OGG1 and NTH1 were identified as potential targets in combination chemotherapeutic strategies. The potential therapeutic benefit for the inhibition of DNA glycosylases was validated by demonstrating synthetic lethality with drugs that are commonly used to limit DNA replication through dNTP pool depletion via inhibition of thymidylate synthetase and dihydrofolate reductase. Additionally, NEIL1-associated synthetic lethality has been achieved in combination with Fanconi anemia, group G. As a prelude to the development of strategies to exploit the potential benefits of DNA glycosylase inhibition, it was necessary to develop a reliable high-throughput screening protocol for this class of enzymes. Using NEIL1 as the proof-of-principle glycosylase, a fluorescence-based assay was developed that utilizes incision of site-specifically modified oligodeoxynucleotides to detect enzymatic activity. This assay was miniaturized to a 1536-well format and used to screen small molecule libraries for inhibitors of the combined glycosylase/AP lyase activities. Among the top hits of these screens were several purine analogs, whose postulated presence in the active site of NEIL1 was consistent with the paradigm of NEIL1 recognition and excision of damaged purines. Although a subset of these small molecules could inhibit other DNA glycosylases that excise oxidatively-induced DNA adducts, they could not inhibit a pyrimidine dimer-specific glycosylase.

  3. Advances in structure elucidation of small molecules using mass spectrometry (United States)

    Fiehn, Oliver


    The structural elucidation of small molecules using mass spectrometry plays an important role in modern life sciences and bioanalytical approaches. This review covers different soft and hard ionization techniques and figures of merit for modern mass spectrometers, such as mass resolving power, mass accuracy, isotopic abundance accuracy, accurate mass multiple-stage MS(n) capability, as well as hybrid mass spectrometric and orthogonal chromatographic approaches. The latter part discusses mass spectral data handling strategies, which includes background and noise subtraction, adduct formation and detection, charge state determination, accurate mass measurements, elemental composition determinations, and complex data-dependent setups with ion maps and ion trees. The importance of mass spectral library search algorithms for tandem mass spectra and multiple-stage MS(n) mass spectra as well as mass spectral tree libraries that combine multiple-stage mass spectra are outlined. The successive chapter discusses mass spectral fragmentation pathways, biotransformation reactions and drug metabolism studies, the mass spectral simulation and generation of in silico mass spectra, expert systems for mass spectral interpretation, and the use of computational chemistry to explain gas-phase phenomena. A single chapter discusses data handling for hyphenated approaches including mass spectral deconvolution for clean mass spectra, cheminformatics approaches and structure retention relationships, and retention index predictions for gas and liquid chromatography. The last section reviews the current state of electronic data sharing of mass spectra and discusses the importance of software development for the advancement of structure elucidation of small molecules. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12566-010-0015-9) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users. PMID:21289855

  4. A model for positron binding to polar molecules

    CERN Document Server

    Gribakin, G F


    A model for positron binding to polar molecules is considered by combining the dipole potential outside the molecule with a strongly repulsive core of a given radius. Using existing experimental data on binding energies leads to unphysically small core radii for all of the molecules studied. This suggests that electron-positron correlations neglected in the simple model play a large role in determining the binding energy. We account for these by including polarization potential via perturbation theory. The improved model enables reliable predictions of binding energies to be made for a range of polar organic molecules and hydrogen cyanide, whose binding energy is known from accurate quantum chemistry calculations. The model explains the linear dependence of the binding energies on the polarizability inferred from the experimental data [Danielson et al 2009 J. Phys. B: At. Mol. Opt. Phys. 42 235203].

  5. Targeting Th17 Cells with Small Molecules and Small Interference RNA. (United States)

    Lin, Hui; Song, Pingfang; Zhao, Yi; Xue, Li-Jia; Liu, Yi; Chu, Cong-Qiu


    T helper 17 (Th17) cells play a central role in inflammatory and autoimmune diseases via the production of proinflammatory cytokines interleukin- (IL-) 17, IL-17F, and IL-22. Anti-IL-17 monoclonal antibodies show potent efficacy in psoriasis but poor effect in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and Crohn's disease. Alternative agents targeting Th17 cells may be a better way to inhibit the development and function of Th17 cells than antibodies of blocking a single effector cytokine. Retinoic acid-related orphan receptor gamma t (RORγt) which acts as the master transcription factor of Th17 differentiation has been an attractive pharmacologic target for the treatment of Th17-mediated autoimmune disease. Recent progress in technology of chemical screen and engineering nucleic acid enable two new classes of therapeutics targeting RORγt. Chemical screen technology identified several small molecule specific inhibitors of RORγt from a small molecule library. Systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX) technology enabled target specific aptamers to be isolated from a random sequence oligonucleotide library. In this review, we highlight the development and therapeutic potential of small molecules inhibiting Th17 cells by targeting RORγt and aptamer mediated CD4(+) T cell specific delivery of small interference RNA against RORγt gene expression to inhibit pathogenic effector functions of Th17 lineage.

  6. Targeting Th17 Cells with Small Molecules and Small Interference RNA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui Lin


    Full Text Available T helper 17 (Th17 cells play a central role in inflammatory and autoimmune diseases via the production of proinflammatory cytokines interleukin- (IL- 17, IL-17F, and IL-22. Anti-IL-17 monoclonal antibodies show potent efficacy in psoriasis but poor effect in rheumatoid arthritis (RA and Crohn’s disease. Alternative agents targeting Th17 cells may be a better way to inhibit the development and function of Th17 cells than antibodies of blocking a single effector cytokine. Retinoic acid-related orphan receptor gamma t (RORγt which acts as the master transcription factor of Th17 differentiation has been an attractive pharmacologic target for the treatment of Th17-mediated autoimmune disease. Recent progress in technology of chemical screen and engineering nucleic acid enable two new classes of therapeutics targeting RORγt. Chemical screen technology identified several small molecule specific inhibitors of RORγt from a small molecule library. Systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX technology enabled target specific aptamers to be isolated from a random sequence oligonucleotide library. In this review, we highlight the development and therapeutic potential of small molecules inhibiting Th17 cells by targeting RORγt and aptamer mediated CD4+ T cell specific delivery of small interference RNA against RORγt gene expression to inhibit pathogenic effector functions of Th17 lineage.

  7. Stochastic Models of Molecule Formation on Dust (United States)

    Charnley, Steven; Wirstroem, Eva


    We will present new theoretical models for the formation of molecules on dust. The growth of ice mantles and their layered structure is accounted for and compared directly to observations through simulation of the expected ice absorption spectra

  8. Discovery of small molecule inhibitors of ubiquitin-like poxvirus proteinase I7L using homology modeling and covalent docking approaches (United States)

    Katritch, Vsevolod; Byrd, Chelsea M.; Tseitin, Vladimir; Dai, Dongcheng; Raush, Eugene; Totrov, Maxim; Abagyan, Ruben; Jordan, Robert; Hruby, Dennis E.


    Essential for viral replication and highly conserved among poxviridae, the vaccinia virus I7L ubiquitin-like proteinase (ULP) is an attractive target for development of smallpox antiviral drugs. At the same time, the I7L proteinase exemplifies several interesting challenges from the rational drug design perspective. In the absence of a published I7L X-ray structure, we have built a detailed 3D model of the I7L ligand binding site (S2-S2' pocket) based on exceptionally high structural conservation of this site in proteases of the ULP family. The accuracy and limitations of this model were assessed through comparative analysis of available X-ray structures of ULPs, as well as energy based conformational modeling. The 3D model of the I7L ligand binding site was used to perform covalent docking and VLS of a comprehensive library of about 230,000 available ketone and aldehyde compounds. Out of 456 predicted ligands, 97 inhibitors of I7L proteinase activity were confirmed in biochemical assays (˜20% overall hit rate). These experimental results both validate our I7L ligand binding model and provide initial leads for rational optimization of poxvirus I7L proteinase inhibitors. Thus, fragments predicted to bind in the prime portion of the active site can be combined with fragments on non-prime side to yield compounds with improved activity and specificity.

  9. Prediction of small molecules' metabolic pathways based on functional group composition. (United States)

    Lu, Jin; Niu, Bing; Liu, Liang; Lu, Wen-Cong; Cai, Yu-Dong


    How to correctly and efficiently determine small molecules' biological function is a challenge and has a positive effect on further metabonomics analysis. Here, we introduce a computational approach to address this problem. The new approach is based on AdaBoost method and featured by function group composition to the metabolic pathway analysis, which can fast and automatically map the small chemical molecules back to the possible metabolic pathway that they belong to. As a result, jackknife cross validation test and independent set test on the model reached 73.7% and 73.8%, respectively. It can be concluded that the current approach is very promising for mapping some unknown molecules' possible metabolic pathway. An online predictor developed by this research is available at

  10. Small molecule modulator of sigma 2 receptor is neuroprotective and reduces cognitive deficits and neuro-inflammation in experimental models of Alzheimer’s disease (United States)

    Yi, Bitna; Sahn, James J.; Ardestani, Pooneh Memar; Evans, Andrew K.; Scott, Luisa; Chan, Jessica Z.; Iyer, Sangeetha; Crisp, Ashley; Zuniga, Gabriella; Pierce-Shimomura, Jonathan; Martin, Stephen F.; Shamloo, Mehrdad


    Accumulating evidence suggests that modulating the sigma 2 receptor (Sig2R) can provide beneficial effects for neurodegenerative diseases. Herein, we report the identification of a novel class of Sig2R binding ligands and their cellular and in vivo activity in experimental models of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). We report that SAS-0132 and DKR-1051, selective ligands of Sig2R, modulate intracellular Ca2+ levels in human SK-N-SH neuroblastoma cells. The Sig2R antagonists SAS-0132 and JVW-1009 are neuroprotective in a C. elegans model of amyloid precursor protein-mediated neurodegeneration. Since this neuroprotective effect is replicated by genetic knockdown and knockout of vem-1, the ortholog of progesterone receptor membrane component-1 (PGRMC1), it indicates that Sig2R ligands modulate a PGRMC1-related pathway. Last, we demonstrate that SAS-0132 improves cognitive performance both in the Thy-1 hAPPLond/Swe+ transgenic mouse model of AD and in healthy wild-type mice. These results demonstrate that Sig2R is a promising therapeutic target for neurocognitive disorders including AD. PMID:27926996

  11. Small molecule mimetics of an HIV-1 gp41 fusion intermediate as vaccine leads. (United States)

    Caulfield, Michael J; Dudkin, Vadim Y; Ottinger, Elizabeth A; Getty, Krista L; Zuck, Paul D; Kaufhold, Robin M; Hepler, Robert W; McGaughey, Georgia B; Citron, Michael; Hrin, Renee C; Wang, Ying-Jie; Miller, Michael D; Joyce, Joseph G


    We describe here a novel platform technology for the discovery of small molecule mimetics of conformational epitopes on protein antigens. As a model system, we selected mimetics of a conserved hydrophobic pocket within the N-heptad repeat region of the HIV-1 envelope protein, gp41. The human monoclonal antibody, D5, binds to this target and exhibits broadly neutralizing activity against HIV-1. We exploited the antigen-binding property of D5 to select complementary small molecules using a high throughput screen of a diverse chemical collection. The resulting small molecule leads were rendered immunogenic by linking them to a carrier protein and were shown to elicit N-heptad repeat-binding antibodies in a fraction of immunized mice. Plasma from HIV-1-infected subjects shown previously to contain broadly neutralizing antibodies was found to contain antibodies capable of binding to haptens represented in the benzylpiperidine leads identified as a result of the high throughput screen, further validating these molecules as vaccine leads. Our results suggest a new paradigm for vaccine discovery using a medicinal chemistry approach to identify lead molecules that, when optimized, could become vaccine candidates for infectious diseases that have been refractory to conventional vaccine development.

  12. Small organic molecules modulating iodine uptake in thyroid

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ambroise, Y. [CEA Saclay, DSV/DBJC/SMMCB, 91 - Gif-sur-Yvette (France)


    The thyroid gland accumulates large quantities of iodine. This uptake is needed for the production of iodinated hormones (T3 and T4). The first step in the iodine accumulation is a basolateral transport of iodide ions by the cloned 'Natrium Iodide Sym-porter' also called NIS. Using high-throughput screening techniques, we have identified a series of inhibitors of the iodide uptake in thyrocytes. These compounds are of medical significance in case of thyroid deregulation and can also offer solutions for radio-iodine detoxification in case of emergency situations (nuclear industry...). In addition, these small organic molecules can be important tools for the understanding of NIS structure and functions In parallel, we have identified and characterized a single compound capable to strongly enhance the amount of intra-cellular iodide in rat thyrocytes (FRTL5) as well as in HEK293 cells transfected with hNIS (Natrium/Iodide Sym-porter). Preliminary studies show that this effect is NIS dependant, and is induced by alternative and unknown mechanisms. Future work will consist in unraveling the mode of action of this molecule. These informations will help us not only to better understand the iodide pathways in the thyroid, but also to design more active analogues. We will use photo-labelling techniques to identify new proteins involved in the iodide transfer and retention. In addition, preliminary experiments are underway to validate our compound as an anti-cancer agent. Targeted NIS gene delivery into tumors plus radio-iodide injection leads to tumor size regression. Unfortunately, doses of radioactivity are to high for safe treatment. Our compound may lead to enhanced radio-iodide entrapment, thus necessitating lower doses of radioactivity for tumor regression. (author)

  13. High performance photovoltaic applications using solution-processed small molecules. (United States)

    Chen, Yongsheng; Wan, Xiangjian; Long, Guankui


    Energy remains a critical issue for the survival and prosperity of humancivilization. Many experts believe that the eventual solution for sustainable energy is the use of direct solar energy as the main energy source. Among the options for renewable energy, photovoltaic technologies that harness solar energy offer a way to harness an unlimited resource and minimum environment impact in contrast with other alternatives such as water, nuclear, and wind energy. Currently, almost all commercial photovoltaic technologies use Si-based technology, which has a number of disadvantages including high cost, lack of flexibility, and the serious environmental impact of the Si industry. Other technologies, such as organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells, can overcome some of these issues. Today, polymer-based OPV (P-OPV) devices have achieved power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) that exceed 9%. Compared with P-OPV, small molecules based OPV (SM-OPV) offers further advantages, including a defined structure for more reproducible performance, higher mobility and open circuit voltage, and easier synthetic control that leads to more diversified structures. Therefore, while largely undeveloped, SM-OPV is an important emerging technology with performance comparable to P-OPV. In this Account, we summarize our recent results on solution-processed SM-OPV. We believe that solution processing is essential for taking full advantage of OPV technologies. Our work started with the synthesis of oligothiophene derivatives with an acceptor-donor-acceptor (A-D-A) structure. Both the backbone conjugation length and electron withdrawing terminal groups play an important role in the light absorption, energy levels and performance of the devices. Among those molecules, devices using a 7-thiophene-unit backbone and a 3-ethylrhodanine (RD) terminal unit produced a 6.1% PCE. With the optimized conjugation length and terminal unit, we borrowed from the results with P-OPV devices to optimize the backbone. Thus we

  14. OPLS3: A Force Field Providing Broad Coverage of Drug-like Small Molecules and Proteins. (United States)

    Harder, Edward; Damm, Wolfgang; Maple, Jon; Wu, Chuanjie; Reboul, Mark; Xiang, Jin Yu; Wang, Lingle; Lupyan, Dmitry; Dahlgren, Markus K; Knight, Jennifer L; Kaus, Joseph W; Cerutti, David S; Krilov, Goran; Jorgensen, William L; Abel, Robert; Friesner, Richard A


    The parametrization and validation of the OPLS3 force field for small molecules and proteins are reported. Enhancements with respect to the previous version (OPLS2.1) include the addition of off-atom charge sites to represent halogen bonding and aryl nitrogen lone pairs as well as a complete refit of peptide dihedral parameters to better model the native structure of proteins. To adequately cover medicinal chemical space, OPLS3 employs over an order of magnitude more reference data and associated parameter types relative to other commonly used small molecule force fields (e.g., MMFF and OPLS_2005). As a consequence, OPLS3 achieves a high level of accuracy across performance benchmarks that assess small molecule conformational propensities and solvation. The newly fitted peptide dihedrals lead to significant improvements in the representation of secondary structure elements in simulated peptides and native structure stability over a number of proteins. Together, the improvements made to both the small molecule and protein force field lead to a high level of accuracy in predicting protein-ligand binding measured over a wide range of targets and ligands (less than 1 kcal/mol RMS error) representing a 30% improvement over earlier variants of the OPLS force field.

  15. A toy model for a diatomic molecule (United States)

    Hecker Denschlag, Johannes


    We introduce a toy model for a diatomic molecule which is based on coupling electronic and nuclear spins to a rigid rotor. Despite its simplicity, the model can be used scientifically to analyze and understand complex molecular hyperfine spectra. In addition, the model has educational value as a number of fundamental symmetries and conservation laws of the molecule can be studied. Because of its simple structure, the model can be readily implemented as a computer program with comparatively short computing times on the order of a few seconds.

  16. Potential of small-molecule fungal metabolites in antiviral chemotherapy. (United States)

    Roy, Biswajit G


    Various viral diseases, such as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, influenza, and hepatitis, have emerged as leading causes of human death worldwide. Scientific endeavor since invention of DNA-dependent RNA polymerase of pox virus in 1967 resulted in better understanding of virus replication and development of various novel therapeutic strategies. Despite considerable advancement in every facet of drug discovery process, development of commercially viable, safe, and effective drugs for these viruses still remains a big challenge. Decades of intense research yielded a handful of natural and synthetic therapeutic options. But emergence of new viruses and drug-resistant viral strains had made new drug development process a never-ending battle. Small-molecule fungal metabolites due to their vast diversity, stereochemical complexity, and preapproved biocompatibility always remain an attractive source for new drug discovery. Though, exploration of therapeutic importance of fungal metabolites has started early with discovery of penicillin, recent prediction asserted that only a small percentage (5-10%) of fungal species have been identified and much less have been scientifically investigated. Therefore, exploration of new fungal metabolites, their bioassay, and subsequent mechanistic study bears huge importance in new drug discovery endeavors. Though no fungal metabolites so far approved for antiviral treatment, many of these exhibited high potential against various viral diseases. This review comprehensively discussed about antiviral activities of fungal metabolites of diverse origin against some important viral diseases. This also highlighted the mechanistic details of inhibition of viral replication along with structure-activity relationship of some common and important classes of fungal metabolites.

  17. Targeting of the MYCN protein with small molecule c-MYC inhibitors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inga Müller

    Full Text Available Members of the MYC family are the most frequently deregulated oncogenes in human cancer and are often correlated with aggressive disease and/or poorly differentiated tumors. Since patients with MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma have a poor prognosis, targeting MYCN using small molecule inhibitors could represent a promising therapeutic approach. We have previously demonstrated that the small molecule 10058-F4, known to bind to the c-MYC bHLHZip dimerization domain and inhibiting the c-MYC/MAX interaction, also interferes with the MYCN/MAX dimerization in vitro and imparts anti-tumorigenic effects in neuroblastoma tumor models with MYCN overexpression. Our previous work also revealed that MYCN-inhibition leads to mitochondrial dysfunction resulting in accumulation of lipid droplets in neuroblastoma cells. To expand our understanding of how small molecules interfere with MYCN, we have now analyzed the direct binding of 10058-F4, as well as three of its analogs; #474, #764 and 10058-F4(7RH, one metabolite C-m/z 232, and a structurally unrelated c-MYC inhibitor 10074-G5, to the bHLHZip domain of MYCN. We also assessed their ability to induce apoptosis, neurite outgrowth and lipid accumulation in neuroblastoma cells. Interestingly, all c-MYC binding molecules tested also bind MYCN as assayed by surface plasmon resonance. Using a proximity ligation assay, we found reduced interaction between MYCN and MAX after treatment with all molecules except for the 10058-F4 metabolite C-m/z 232 and the non-binder 10058-F4(7RH. Importantly, 10074-G5 and 10058-F4 were the most efficient in inducing neuronal differentiation and lipid accumulation in MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma cells. Together our data demonstrate MYCN-binding properties for a selection of small molecules, and provide functional information that could be of importance for future development of targeted therapies against MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma.

  18. Using the gini coefficient to measure the chemical diversity of small-molecule libraries. (United States)

    Weidlich, Iwona E; Filippov, Igor V


    Modern databases of small organic molecules contain tens of millions of structures. The size of theoretically available chemistry is even larger. However, despite the large amount of chemical information, the "big data" moment for chemistry has not yet provided the corresponding payoff of cheaper computer-predicted medicine or robust machine-learning models for the determination of efficacy and toxicity. Here, we present a study of the diversity of chemical datasets using a measure that is commonly used in socioeconomic studies. We demonstrate the use of this diversity measure on several datasets that were constructed to contain various congeneric subsets of molecules as well as randomly selected molecules. We also apply our method to a number of well-known databases that are frequently used for structure-activity relationship modeling. Our results show the poor diversity of the common sources of potential lead compounds compared to actual known drugs. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Small Molecule Identification with MOLGEN and Mass Spectrometry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Markus Meringer


    Full Text Available This paper details the MOLGEN entries for the 2012 CASMI contest for small molecule identification to demonstrate structure elucidation using structure generation approaches. Different MOLGEN programs were used for different categories, including MOLGEN–MS/MS for Category 1, MOLGEN 3.5 and 5.0 for Category 2 and MOLGEN–MS for Categories 3 and 4. A greater focus is given to Categories 1 and 2, as most CASMI participants entered these categories. The settings used and the reasons behind them are described in detail, while various evaluations are used to put these results into perspective. As one author was also an organiser of CASMI, these submissions were not part of the official CASMI competition, but this paper provides an insight into how unknown identification could be performed using structure generation approaches. The approaches are semi-automated (category dependent and benefit greatly from user experience. Thus, the results presented and discussed here may be better than those an inexperienced user could obtain with MOLGEN programs.

  20. Small-Molecule Inhibition of BRDT for Male Contraception (United States)

    Matzuk, Martin M.; McKeown, Michael R.; Filippakopoulos, Panagis; Li, Qinglei; Ma, Lang; Agno, Julio E.; Lemieux, Madeleine E.; Picaud, Sarah; Yu, Richard N.; Qi, Jun; Knapp, Stefan; Bradner, James E.


    Summary A pharmacologic approach to male contraception remains a longstanding challenge in medicine. Toward this objective, we explored the spermatogenic effects of a selective small-molecule inhibitor (JQ1) of the bromodomain and extraterminal (BET) subfamily of epigenetic reader proteins. Here, we report potent inhibition of the testis-specific member BRDT, which is essential for chromatin remodeling during spermatogenesis. Biochemical and crystallographic studies confirm that occupancy of the BRDT acetyl-lysine binding pocket by JQ1 prevents recognition of acetylated histone H4. Treatment of mice with JQ1 reduced seminiferous tubule area, testis size, and spermatozoa number and motility without affecting hormone levels. Although JQ1-treated males mate normally, inhibitory effects of JQ1 evident at the spermatocyte and round spermatid stages cause a complete and reversible contraceptive effect. These data establish a new contraceptive that can cross the blood:testis boundary and inhibit bromodomain activity during spermatogenesis, providing a lead compound targeting the male germ cell for contraception. PaperClip PMID:22901802

  1. Small molecules from natural sources, targeting signaling pathways in diabetes. (United States)

    Liu, Qiong; Chen, Lili; Hu, Lihong; Guo, Yuewei; Shen, Xu


    Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a metabolic disease caused by genetic or environmental factors. It has rendered a severe menace to the middle-aged and elderly, while there is still lack of efficient drugs against this disease. The pathogenic mechanism for DM is complex, and the complicated networks related to this disease involve distinct signaling pathways. Currently, discovery of potential modulators targeting these pathways has become a potent approach for anti-diabetic drug lead compound development. Compared with synthetic compounds, natural products provide inherent larger-scale structural diversity and have been the major resource of bioactive agents for new drug discovery. To date, more and more active components from plants or marine organisms have been reported to regulate diabetic pathophysiological signaling pathways and exhibit anti-diabetic activity. This review will summarize the regulation of natural small molecules on some key signaling pathways involved in DM. These pathways include insulin signaling pathway, carbohydrate metabolism pathway, the pathways involving insulin secretion and PPAR regulation, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and inflammation related pathways and chromatin modification pathways. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Hydrogen bonding characterization in water and small molecules (United States)

    Silvestrelli, Pier Luigi


    The prototypical hydrogen bond in water dimer and hydrogen bonds in the protonated water dimer, in other small molecules, in water cyclic clusters, and in ice, covering a wide range of bond strengths, are theoretically investigated by first-principles calculations based on density functional theory, considering not only a standard generalized gradient approximation functional but also, for the water dimer, hybrid and van der Waals corrected functionals. We compute structural, energetic, and electrostatic (induced molecular dipole moments) properties. In particular, hydrogen bonds are characterized in terms of differential electron density distributions and profiles, and of the shifts of the centres of maximally localized Wannier functions. The information from the latter quantities can be conveyed to a single geometric bonding parameter that appears to be correlated with the Mayer bond order parameter and can be taken as an estimate of the covalent contribution to the hydrogen bond. By considering the water trimer, the cyclic water hexamer, and the hexagonal phase of ice, we also elucidate the importance of cooperative/anticooperative effects in hydrogen-bonding formation.

  3. A new class of small molecule inhibitor of BMP signaling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caroline E Sanvitale

    Full Text Available Growth factor signaling pathways are tightly regulated by phosphorylation and include many important kinase targets of interest for drug discovery. Small molecule inhibitors of the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP receptor kinase ALK2 (ACVR1 are needed urgently to treat the progressively debilitating musculoskeletal disease fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP. Dorsomorphin analogues, first identified in zebrafish, remain the only BMP inhibitor chemotype reported to date. By screening an assay panel of 250 recombinant human kinases we identified a highly selective 2-aminopyridine-based inhibitor K02288 with in vitro activity against ALK2 at low nanomolar concentrations similar to the current lead compound LDN-193189. K02288 specifically inhibited the BMP-induced Smad pathway without affecting TGF-β signaling and induced dorsalization of zebrafish embryos. Comparison of the crystal structures of ALK2 with K02288 and LDN-193189 revealed additional contacts in the K02288 complex affording improved shape complementarity and identified the exposed phenol group for further optimization of pharmacokinetics. The discovery of a new chemical series provides an independent pharmacological tool to investigate BMP signaling and offers multiple opportunities for pre-clinical development.

  4. Electrocatalytic recycling of CO2 and small organic molecules. (United States)

    Lee, Jaeyoung; Kwon, Youngkook; Machunda, Revocatus L; Lee, Hye Jin


    As global warming directly affects the ecosystems and humankind in the 21st century, attention and efforts are continuously being made to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, especially carbon dioxide (CO2). In addition, there have been numerous efforts to electrochemically convert CO2 gas to small organic molecules (SOMs) and vice versa. Herein, we highlight recent advances made in the electrocatalytic recycling of CO2 and SOMs including (i) the overall trend of research activities made in this area, (ii) the relations between reduction conditions and products in the aqueous phase, (iii) the challenges in the use of gas diffusion electrodes for the continuous gas phase CO2 reduction, as well as (iv) the development of state of the art hybrid techniques for industrial applications. Perspectives geared to fully exploit the potential of zero-gap cells for CO2 reduction in the gaseous phase and the high applicability on a large scale are also presented. We envision that the hybrid system for CO2 reduction supported by sustainable solar, wind, and geothermal energies and waste heat will provide a long term reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and will allow for continued use of the abundant fossil fuels by industries and/or power plants but with zero emissions.

  5. Multi-small molecule conjugations as new targeted delivery carriers for tumor therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shan L


    Full Text Available Lingling Shan,1 Ming Liu,2 Chao Wu,1 Liang Zhao,1 Siwen Li,3 Lisheng Xu,1 Wengen Cao,1 Guizhen Gao,1 Yueqing Gu3 1Institute of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, School of Biology and Food Engineering, Suzhou University, Suzhou, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Biology, University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD, USA; 3Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Life Science and Technology, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing, People’s Republic of China Abstract: In response to the challenges of cancer chemotherapeutics, including poor physicochemical properties, low tumor targeting ability, and harmful side effects, we developed a new tumor-targeted multi-small molecule drug delivery platform. Using paclitaxel (PTX as a model therapeutic, we prepared two prodrugs, ie, folic acid-fluorescein-5(6-isothiocyanate-arginine-paclitaxel (FA-FITC-Arg-PTX and folic acid-5-aminofluorescein-glutamic-paclitaxel (FA-5AF-Glu-PTX, composed of folic acid (FA, target, amino acids (Arg or Glu, linker, and fluorescent dye (fluorescein in vitro or near-infrared fluorescent dye in vivo in order to better understand the mechanism of PTX prodrug targeting. In vitro and acute toxicity studies demonstrated the low toxicity of the prodrug formulations compared with the free drug. In vitro and in vivo studies indicated that folate receptor-mediated uptake of PTX-conjugated multi-small molecule carriers induced high antitumor activity. Notably, compared with free PTX and with PTX-loaded macromolecular carriers from our previous study, this multi-small molecule-conjugated strategy improved the water solubility, loading rate, targeting ability, antitumor activity, and toxicity profile of PTX. These results support the use of multi-small molecules as tumor-targeting drug delivery systems. Keywords: multi-small molecules, paclitaxel, prodrugs, targeting, tumor therapy

  6. Phosphate binding energy and catalysis by small and large molecules. (United States)

    Morrow, Janet R; Amyes, Tina L; Richard, John P


    Catalysis is an important process in chemistry and enzymology. The rate acceleration for any catalyzed reaction is the difference between the activation barriers for the uncatalyzed (Delta G(HO)(#)) and catalyzed (Delta G(Me)(#)) reactions, which corresponds to the binding energy (Delta G(S)(#) = Delta G(Me)(#)-Delta G(HO)(#)) for transfer of the reaction transition state from solution to the catalyst. This transition state binding energy is a fundamental descriptor of catalyzed reactions, and its evaluation is necessary for an understanding of any and all catalytic processes. We have evaluated the transition state binding energies obtained from interactions between low molecular weight metal ion complexes or high molecular weight protein catalysts and the phosphate group of bound substrate. Work on catalysis by small molecules is exemplified by studies on the mechanism of action of Zn2(1)(H2O). A binding energy of Delta G(S)(#) = -9.6 kcal/mol was determined for Zn2(1)(H2O)-catalyzed cleavage of the RNA analogue HpPNP. The pH-rate profile for this cleavage reaction showed that there is optimal catalytic activity at high pH, where the catalyst is in the basic form [Zn2(1)(HO-)]. However, it was also shown that the active form of the catalyst is Zn2(1)(H2O) and that this recognizes the C2-oxygen-ionized substrate in the cleavage reaction. The active catalyst Zn2(1)(H2O) shows a high affinity for oxyphosphorane transition state dianions and a stable methyl phosphate transition state analogue, compared with the affinity for phosphate monoanion substrates. The transition state binding energies, Delta G(S)(#), for cleavage of HpPNP catalyzed by a variety of Zn2+ and Eu3+ metal ion complexes reflect the increase in the catalytic activity with increasing total positive charge at the catalyst. These values of Delta G(S)(#) are affected by interactions between the metal ion and its ligands, but these effects are small in comparison with Delta G(S)(#) observed for catalysis

  7. Classical interaction model for the water molecule. (United States)

    Baranyai, András; Bartók, Albert


    The authors propose a new classical model for the water molecule. The geometry of the molecule is built on the rigid TIP5P model and has the experimental gas phase dipole moment of water created by four equal point charges. The model preserves its rigidity but the size of the charges increases or decreases following the electric field created by the rest of the molecules. The polarization is expressed by an electric field dependent nonlinear polarization function. The increasing dipole of the molecule slightly increases the size of the water molecule expressed by the oxygen-centered sigma parameter of the Lennard-Jones interaction. After refining the adjustable parameters, the authors performed Monte Carlo simulations to check the ability of the new model in the ice, liquid, and gas phases. They determined the density and internal energy of several ice polymorphs, liquid water, and gaseous water and calculated the heat capacity, the isothermal compressibility, the isobar heat expansion coefficients, and the dielectric constant of ambient water. They also determined the pair-correlation functions of ambient water and calculated the energy of the water dimer. The accuracy of theirs results was satisfactory.

  8. Small?molecule Hedgehog inhibitor attenuates the leukemia?initiation potential of acute myeloid leukemia cells


    Fukushima, Nobuaki; Minami, Yosuke; Kakiuchi, Seiji; Kuwatsuka, Yachiyo; Hayakawa, Fumihiko; Jamieson, Catoriona; Kiyoi, Hitoshi; Naoe, Tomoki


    Aberrant activation of the Hedgehog signaling pathway has been implicated in the maintenance of leukemia stem cell populations in several model systems. PF?04449913 (PF?913) is a selective, small?molecule inhibitor of Smoothened, a membrane protein that regulates the Hedgehog pathway. However, details of the proof?of?concept and mechanism of action of PF?913 following administration to patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) are unclear. This study examined the role of the Hedgehog signali...

  9. Small Molecule Modulator of p53 Signaling Pathway: Application for Radiosensitizing or Radioprotection Agents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oh, Sang Taek; Cho, Mun Ju; Gwak, Jung Sug; Ryu, Min Jung [PharmacoGenomics Research Center, Inje University, Busan (Korea, Republic of); Song, Jie Young; Yun, Yeon Sook [Korea Institute of Radiological and Medical Sciences, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)


    The tumor suppressor p53 is key molecule to protect the cell against genotoxic stress and..the most frequently cancer cells. Lack of functional accompanied by high rate of genomic instability, rapid tumor progression, resistance to anticancer therapy, and increased angiogenesis. In response to DNA damage, p53 protein rapidly accumulated through attenuated proteolysis and is also activated as transcription factor. Activated p53 up-regulates target genes involved in cell cycle arrest and/or apoptosis and then lead to suppression of malignant transformation and the maintenance of genomic integrity. Chemical genetics is a new technology to uncover the signaling networks that regulated biological phenotype using exogenous reagents such as small molecules. Analogous to classical forward genetic screens in model organism, this approach makes use of high throughput, phenotypic assay to identify small molecules that disrupt gene product function in a way that alters a phenotype of interest. Recently, interesting small molecules were identified from cell based high throughput screening and its target protein or mechanism of action were identified by various methods including affinity chromatography, protein array profiling, mRNA or phage display, transcription profiling, and RNA interference.

  10. Small-molecule inhibitors of dengue-virus entry.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron G Schmidt

    Full Text Available Flavivirus envelope protein (E mediates membrane fusion and viral entry from endosomes. A low-pH induced, dimer-to-trimer rearrangement and reconfiguration of the membrane-proximal "stem" of the E ectodomain draw together the viral and cellular membranes. We found stem-derived peptides from dengue virus (DV bind stem-less E trimer and mimic the stem-reconfiguration step in the fusion pathway. We adapted this experiment as a high-throughput screen for small molecules that block peptide binding and thus may inhibit viral entry. A compound identified in this screen, 1662G07, and a number of its analogs reversibly inhibit DV infectivity. They do so by binding the prefusion, dimeric E on the virion surface, before adsorption to a cell. They also block viral fusion with liposomes. Structure-activity relationship studies have led to analogs with submicromolar IC₉₀s against DV2, and certain analogs are active against DV serotypes 1,2, and 4. The compounds do not inhibit the closely related Kunjin virus. We propose that they bind in a previously identified, E-protein pocket, exposed on the virion surface and although this pocket is closed in the postfusion trimer, its mouth is fully accessible. Examination of the E-trimer coordinates (PDB 1OK8 shows that conformational fluctuations around the hinge could open the pocket without dissociating the trimer or otherwise generating molecular collisions. We propose that compounds such as 1662G07 trap the sE trimer in a "pocket-open" state, which has lost affinity for the stem peptide and cannot support the final "zipping up" of the stem.

  11. Small molecule screen for candidate antimalarials targeting Plasmodium Kinesin-5. (United States)

    Liu, Liqiong; Richard, Jessica; Kim, Sunyoung; Wojcik, Edward J


    Plasmodium falciparum and vivax are responsible for the majority of malaria infections worldwide, resulting in over a million deaths annually. Malaria parasites now show measured resistance to all currently utilized drugs. Novel antimalarial drugs are urgently needed. The Plasmodium Kinesin-5 mechanoenzyme is a suitable "next generation" target. Discovered via small molecule screen experiments, the human Kinesin-5 has multiple allosteric sites that are "druggable." One site in particular, unique in its sequence divergence across all homologs in the superfamily and even within the same family, exhibits exquisite drug specificity. We propose that Plasmodium Kinesin-5 shares this allosteric site and likewise can be targeted to uncover inhibitors with high specificity. To test this idea, we performed a screen for inhibitors selective for Plasmodium Kinesin-5 ATPase activity in parallel with human Kinesin-5. Our screen of nearly 2000 compounds successfully identified compounds that selectively inhibit both P. vivax and falciparum Kinesin-5 motor domains but, as anticipated, do not impact human Kinesin-5 activity. Of note is a candidate drug that did not biochemically compete with the ATP substrate for the conserved active site or disrupt the microtubule-binding site. Together, our experiments identified MMV666693 as a selective allosteric inhibitor of Plasmodium Kinesin-5; this is the first identified protein target for the Medicines of Malaria Venture validated collection of parasite proliferation inhibitors. This work demonstrates that chemical screens against human kinesins are adaptable to homologs in disease organisms and, as such, extendable to strategies to combat infectious disease. © 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  12. Small Molecule Screen for Candidate Antimalarials Targeting Plasmodium Kinesin-5* (United States)

    Liu, Liqiong; Richard, Jessica; Kim, Sunyoung; Wojcik, Edward J.


    Plasmodium falciparum and vivax are responsible for the majority of malaria infections worldwide, resulting in over a million deaths annually. Malaria parasites now show measured resistance to all currently utilized drugs. Novel antimalarial drugs are urgently needed. The Plasmodium Kinesin-5 mechanoenzyme is a suitable “next generation” target. Discovered via small molecule screen experiments, the human Kinesin-5 has multiple allosteric sites that are “druggable.” One site in particular, unique in its sequence divergence across all homologs in the superfamily and even within the same family, exhibits exquisite drug specificity. We propose that Plasmodium Kinesin-5 shares this allosteric site and likewise can be targeted to uncover inhibitors with high specificity. To test this idea, we performed a screen for inhibitors selective for Plasmodium Kinesin-5 ATPase activity in parallel with human Kinesin-5. Our screen of nearly 2000 compounds successfully identified compounds that selectively inhibit both P. vivax and falciparum Kinesin-5 motor domains but, as anticipated, do not impact human Kinesin-5 activity. Of note is a candidate drug that did not biochemically compete with the ATP substrate for the conserved active site or disrupt the microtubule-binding site. Together, our experiments identified MMV666693 as a selective allosteric inhibitor of Plasmodium Kinesin-5; this is the first identified protein target for the Medicines of Malaria Venture validated collection of parasite proliferation inhibitors. This work demonstrates that chemical screens against human kinesins are adaptable to homologs in disease organisms and, as such, extendable to strategies to combat infectious disease. PMID:24737313

  13. A geometry-based simulation of the hydration of ions and small molecules

    CERN Document Server

    Plumridge, T H


    software has been tested with a set of twenty widely varying solutes and has produced results which generally agree with experimental data for structure makers and breakers, and also agrees well with traditional techniques such as molecular dynamics and Monte Carlo techniques. The behaviour of solutes in water is of universal significance, but still not fully understood. This thesis provides details of a new computer simulation technique used to investigate the hydration of ions and small molecules. In contrast to conventional techniques such as molecular dynamics, this is a purely geometric method involving no forcefield or energy terms. Molecules of interest are modelled using crystallographic data to ensure that the structures are accurate. Water molecules are added randomly at any hydrogen bonding site in chains. At each addition the chain is rotated through all available space testing for the possibility of ring formation. The constraints used by the program to decide whether a ring should be conserved, ...

  14. Tuning stamp surface energy for soft lithography of polar molecules to fabricate bioactive small-molecule microarrays. (United States)

    Vaish, Amit; Shuster, Mitchell J; Cheunkar, Sarawut; Weiss, Paul S; Andrews, Anne M


    Soft-lithography-based techniques are widely used to fabricate microarrays. Here, the use of microcontact insertion printing is described, a soft-lithography method specifically developed for patterning at the dilute scales necessary for highly selective biorecognition. By carefully tuning the polar surface energy of polymeric stamps, problems associated with patterning hydrophilic tether molecules inserted into hydrophilic host self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) are surmounted. Both prefunctionalized tethers and on-chip functionalization of SAMs patterned by microcontact insertion printing enable the fabrication of small-molecule microarrays. Substrates patterned with the neurotransmitter precursor 5-hydroxytryptophan selectively capture a number of different types of membrane-associated receptor proteins, which are native binding partners evolved to recognize free serotonin. These advances provide new avenues for chemically patterning small molecules and fabricating small molecule microarrays with highly specific molecular recognition capabilities. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  15. Modelling proton transfer in water molecule chains

    CERN Document Server

    Korzhimanov, Artem; Shutova, Tatiana; Samuelsson, Goran


    The process of protons transport in molecular water chains is of fundamental interest for many biological systems. Although many features of such systems can be analyzed using large-scale computational modeling, other features are better understood in terms of simplified model problems. Here we have tested, analytically and numerically, a model describing the classical proton hopping process in molecular water chains. In order to capture the main features of the proton hopping process in such molecular chains, we use a simplified model for our analysis. In particular, our discrete model describes a 1D chain of water molecules situated in an external protein channel structure, and each water molecule is allowed to oscillate around its equilibrium point in this system, while the protons are allowed to move along the line of neighboring oxygen atoms. The occurrence and properties of nonlinear solitary transport structures, allowing for much faster proton transport, are discussed, and the possible implications of...

  16. The logic and design of analog-sensitive kinases and their small molecule inhibitors. (United States)

    Lopez, Michael S; Kliegman, Joseph I; Shokat, Kevan M


    Analog-sensitive AS Kinase technology allows for rapid, reversible, and highly specific inhibition of individual engineered kinases in cells and in mouse models of human diseases. The technique consists of two parts: a kinase containing a space-creating mutation in the ATP-binding pocket and a bulky ATP-competitive small molecule inhibitor that complements the shape of the mutant ATP pocket. This strategy enables dissection of phospho-signaling pathways, elucidation of the physiological function of individual kinases, and characterization of the pharmacology of clinical-kinase inhibitors. Here, we present an overview of AS technology and describe a stepwise approach for generating AS Kinase mutants and identifying appropriate small molecule inhibitors. We also describe commonly encountered technical obstacles and provide strategies to overcome them.

  17. Small molecule inhibitors block Gas6-inducible TAM activation and tumorigenicity (United States)

    Kimani, Stanley G.; Kumar, Sushil; Bansal, Nitu; Singh, Kamalendra; Kholodovych, Vladyslav; Comollo, Thomas; Peng, Youyi; Kotenko, Sergei V.; Sarafianos, Stefan G.; Bertino, Joseph R.; Welsh, William J.; Birge, Raymond B.


    TAM receptors (Tyro-3, Axl, and Mertk) are a family of three homologous type I receptor tyrosine kinases that are implicated in several human malignancies. Overexpression of TAMs and their major ligand Growth arrest-specific factor 6 (Gas6) is associated with more aggressive staging of cancers, poorer predicted patient survival, acquired drug resistance and metastasis. Here we describe small molecule inhibitors (RU-301 and RU-302) that target the extracellular domain of Axl at the interface of the Ig-1 ectodomain of Axl and the Lg-1 of Gas6. These inhibitors effectively block Gas6-inducible Axl receptor activation with low micromolar IC50s in cell-based reporter assays, inhibit Gas6-inducible motility in Axl-expressing cell lines, and suppress H1299 lung cancer tumor growth in a mouse xenograft NOD-SCIDγ model. Furthermore, using homology models and biochemical verifications, we show that RU301 and 302 also inhibit Gas6 inducible activation of Mertk and Tyro3 suggesting they can act as pan-TAM inhibitors that block the interface between the TAM Ig1 ectodomain and the Gas6 Lg domain. Together, these observations establish that small molecules that bind to the interface between TAM Ig1 domain and Gas6 Lg1 domain can inhibit TAM activation, and support the further development of small molecule Gas6-TAM interaction inhibitors as a novel class of cancer therapeutics. PMID:28272423

  18. Small molecule hydration energy and entropy from 3D-RISM (United States)

    Johnson, J.; Case, D. A.; Yamazaki, T.; Gusarov, S.; Kovalenko, A.; Luchko, T.


    Implicit solvent models offer an attractive way to estimate the effects of a solvent environment on the properties of small or large solutes without the complications of explicit simulations. One common test of accuracy is to compute the free energy of transfer from gas to liquid for a variety of small molecules, since many of these values have been measured. Studies of the temperature dependence of these values (i.e. solvation enthalpies and entropies) can provide additional insights into the performance of implicit solvent models. Here, we show how to compute temperature derivatives of hydration free energies for the 3D-RISM integral equation approach. We have computed hydration free energies of 1123 small drug-like molecules (both neutral and charged). Temperature derivatives were also used to calculate hydration energies and entropies of 74 of these molecules (both neutral and charged) for which experimental data is available. While direct results have rather poor agreement with experiment, we have found that several previously proposed linear hydration free energy correction schemes give good agreement with experiment. These corrections also provide good agreement for hydration energies and entropies though simple extensions are required in some cases.

  19. Harnessing Connectivity in a Large-Scale Small-Molecule Sensitivity Dataset | Office of Cancer Genomics (United States)

    Identifying genetic alterations that prime a cancer cell to respond to a particular therapeutic agent can facilitate the development of precision cancer medicines. Cancer cell-line (CCL) profiling of small-molecule sensitivity has emerged as an unbiased method to assess the relationships between genetic or cellular features of CCLs and small-molecule response. Here, we developed annotated cluster multidimensional enrichment analysis to explore the associations between groups of small molecules and groups of CCLs in a new, quantitative sensitivity dataset.

  20. Systematic development of small molecules to inhibit specific microscopic steps of Aβ42 aggregation in Alzheimer’s disease (United States)

    Habchi, Johnny; Chia, Sean; Limbocker, Ryan; Mannini, Benedetta; Ahn, Minkoo; Perni, Michele; Hansson, Oskar; Arosio, Paolo; Kumita, Janet R.; Challa, Pavan Kumar; Cohen, Samuel I. A.; Dobson, Christopher M.; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Vendruscolo, Michele


    The aggregation of the 42-residue form of the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ42) is a pivotal event in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The use of chemical kinetics has recently enabled highly accurate quantifications of the effects of small molecules on specific microscopic steps in Aβ42 aggregation. Here, we exploit this approach to develop a rational drug discovery strategy against Aβ42 aggregation that uses as a read-out the changes in the nucleation and elongation rate constants caused by candidate small molecules. We thus identify a pool of compounds that target specific microscopic steps in Aβ42 aggregation. We then test further these small molecules in human cerebrospinal fluid and in a Caenorhabditis elegans model of AD. Our results show that this strategy represents a powerful approach to identify systematically small molecule lead compounds, thus offering an appealing opportunity to reduce the attrition problem in drug discovery. PMID:28011763

  1. Genome-Scale Architecture of Small Molecule Regulatory Networks and the Fundamental Trade-Off between Regulation and Enzymatic Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ed Reznik


    Full Text Available Metabolic flux is in part regulated by endogenous small molecules that modulate the catalytic activity of an enzyme, e.g., allosteric inhibition. In contrast to transcriptional regulation of enzymes, technical limitations have hindered the production of a genome-scale atlas of small molecule-enzyme regulatory interactions. Here, we develop a framework leveraging the vast, but fragmented, biochemical literature to reconstruct and analyze the small molecule regulatory network (SMRN of the model organism Escherichia coli, including the primary metabolite regulators and enzyme targets. Using metabolic control analysis, we prove a fundamental trade-off between regulation and enzymatic activity, and we combine it with metabolomic measurements and the SMRN to make inferences on the sensitivity of enzymes to their regulators. Generalizing the analysis to other organisms, we identify highly conserved regulatory interactions across evolutionarily divergent species, further emphasizing a critical role for small molecule interactions in the maintenance of metabolic homeostasis.

  2. Ambient roll-to-roll fabrication of flexible solar cells based on small molecules

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lin, Yuze; Dam, Henrik Friis; Andersen, Thomas Rieks


    All solution-processed roll-to-roll flexible solar cells based on a starshaped small molecule donor and PCBMacceptor were fabricated by slot-die coating, as the first successful example reported for small molecule roll-to-roll flexible solar cells.......All solution-processed roll-to-roll flexible solar cells based on a starshaped small molecule donor and PCBMacceptor were fabricated by slot-die coating, as the first successful example reported for small molecule roll-to-roll flexible solar cells....

  3. Non-Collinearity in Small Magnetic Cobalt-Benzene Molecules

    CERN Document Server

    González, J W; Delgado, F; Aguilera-Granja, F; Ayuela, A


    Cobalt clusters covered with benzene in the form of rice-ball structures have recently been synthesized using laser ablation. Here, we investigate the types of magnetic order such clusters have, and whether they retain any magnetic order at all. We use different density functional theory (DFT) methods to study the experimentally relevant three cobalt atoms surrounded by benzene rings. We found that the benzene rings induce a ground state with non-collinear magnetization, with the magnetic moments localized on the cobalt centers and lying on the plane formed by the three cobalt atoms. This is surprising because nanostructures and small clusters based on pure cobalt typically have a predominantly ferromagnetic order, and additional organic ligands such as benzene tend to remove the magnetization. We analyze the magnetism of such a cluster using an anisotropic Heisenberg model where the involved parameters are obtained by a comparison with the DFT results. Moreover, we propose electron paramagnetic resonance as ...

  4. Nanoelectropulse-driven membrane perturbation and small molecule permeabilization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun Yinghua


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Nanosecond, megavolt-per-meter pulsed electric fields scramble membrane phospholipids, release intracellular calcium, and induce apoptosis. Flow cytometric and fluorescence microscopy evidence has associated phospholipid rearrangement directly with nanoelectropulse exposure and supports the hypothesis that the potential that develops across the lipid bilayer during an electric pulse drives phosphatidylserine (PS externalization. Results In this work we extend observations of cells exposed to electric pulses with 30 ns and 7 ns durations to still narrower pulse widths, and we find that even 3 ns pulses are sufficient to produce responses similar to those reported previously. We show here that in contrast to unipolar pulses, which perturb membrane phospholipid order, tracked with FM1-43 fluorescence, only at the anode side of the cell, bipolar pulses redistribute phospholipids at both the anode and cathode poles, consistent with migration of the anionic PS head group in the transmembrane field. In addition, we demonstrate that, as predicted by the membrane charging hypothesis, a train of shorter pulses requires higher fields to produce phospholipid scrambling comparable to that produced by a time-equivalent train of longer pulses (for a given applied field, 30, 4 ns pulses produce a weaker response than 4, 30 ns pulses. Finally, we show that influx of YO-PRO-1, a fluorescent dye used to detect early apoptosis and activation of the purinergic P2X7 receptor channels, is observed after exposure of Jurkat T lymphoblasts to sufficiently large numbers of pulses, suggesting that membrane poration occurs even with nanosecond pulses when the electric field is high enough. Propidium iodide entry, a traditional indicator of electroporation, occurs with even higher pulse counts. Conclusion Megavolt-per-meter electric pulses as short as 3 ns alter the structure of the plasma membrane and permeabilize the cell to small molecules. The dose

  5. A study of small molecule ingress into planar and cylindrical materials using ion beam analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Smith, R W


    mechanisms that take place, and where relevant diffusion coefficients have been obtained using either a semi-infinite medium Fickian planar diffusion model or a cylindrical Fickian diffusion model. Ion beam analysis techniques have been developed to allow profiling of small molecules diffused into materials at depths ranging from 10 sup - sup 7 to 10 sup - sup 1 m. A model DPS/PS/DPS triple-layer film and D( sup 3 He,p) sup 4 He nuclear reaction analysis was used to test the applicability of a novel data processing program - the IBA DataFurnace - to nuclear reaction data. The same reaction and program were used to depth profile the diffusion of heavy water into cellophane. A scanning sup 3 He micro-beam technique was developed to profile the diffusion of small molecules into both planar and cylindrical materials. The materials were exposed to liquids containing deuterium labelled molecules. A cross-section was exposed by cutting the material perpendicular to the surface and this was bombarded by a scanning su...

  6. Development of Small Molecule Activators of Protein Phosphotase 2A (SMAPs) for the Treatment of Castration Resistant Prostate Cancer (United States)


    Army position, policy or decision unless so designated by other documentation. 2 REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE Form Approved OMB No. 0704-0188 Public...recently developed a series of small molecules that activate PP2A and thereby exert anticancer effects in cell culture and xenograft models. This...molecules that activate PP2A and thereby exert anticancer effects in cell culture and xenograft models. This proposal focuses on a third generation

  7. Novel small molecule EGFR inhibitors as candidate drugs in non-small cell lung cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Berardi R


    Full Text Available Rossana Berardi, Matteo Santoni, Francesca Morgese, Zelmira Ballatore, Agnese Savini, Azzurra Onofri, Paola Mazzanti, Mirco Pistelli, Chiara Pierantoni, Mariagrazia De Lisa, Miriam Caramanti, Silvia Pagliaretta, Chiara Pellei, Stefano CascinuMedical Oncology Unit, Universita Politecnica delle Marche, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Ospedali Riuniti Umberto I – GM Lancisi – G Salesi, Ancona, ItalyAbstract: In the last decade, better understanding of the role of epidermal growth factor receptor in the pathogenesis and progression of non-small cell lung cancer has led to a revolution in the work-up of these neoplasms. Tyrosine kinase inhibitors, such as erlotinib and gefitinib, have been approved for the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer, demonstrating an improvement in progression-free and overall survival, particularly in patients harboring activating EGFR mutations. Nevertheless, despite initial responses and long-lasting remissions, resistance to tyrosine kinase inhibitors invariably develops, most commonly due to the emergence of secondary T790M mutations or to the amplification of mesenchymal–epithelial transition factor (c-Met, which inevitably leads to treatment failure. Several clinical studies are ongoing (, aimed to evaluate the efficacy and toxicity of combined approaches and to develop novel irreversible or multitargeted tyrosine kinase inhibitors and mutant-selective inhibitors to overcome such resistance. This review is an overview of ongoing Phase I, II, and III trials of novel small molecule epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitors and combinations in non-small cell lung cancer patients.Keywords: clinical trials, combined targeted therapy, epidermal growth factor receptor, non-small cell lung cancer, novel targeted agents, tyrosine kinase inhibitors

  8. Small molecules activating TrkB receptor for treating a variety of CNS disorders. (United States)

    Zeng, Yan; Wang, Xiaonan; Wang, Qiang; Liu, Shumin; Hu, Xiamin; McClintock, Shawn M


    The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its high affinity receptor tropomyosin-receptor-kinase B (TrkB) play a critical role in neuronal differentiation and survival, synapse plasticity, and memory. Indeed, both have been implicated in the pathophysiology of numerous diseases. Although the remarkable therapeutic potential of BDNF has generated much research over the past decade, the poor pharmacokinetics and adverse side effect profile have limited its clinical usefulness of BDNF. Small compounds that mimic BDNF's neurotrophic signaling and overcome the pharmacokinetic and side effect barriers may have greater therapeutic potential. The purpose of this review is to provide a survey of the various strategies taken towards the development of small molecule mimetics for BDNF and the selective TrkB agonist. A particular focus was placed on TrkB agonist 7, 8-dihydroxyflavone, which modulates multiple functions and has demonstrated remarkable therapeutic efficacy in a variety of central nervous system disease models. Two other small molecules included in this review are adenosine A2A receptor agonists that indirectly activate TrkB, and TrkB binding domains of BDNF, loop II-LM22A compounds that directly activate TrkB. These alternative molecules have shown promise in preclinical studies and may be included in prospective clinical investigations.

  9. Allosteric “beta-blocker” isolated from a DNA-encoded small molecule library (United States)

    Ahn, Seungkirl; Kahsai, Alem W.; Pani, Biswaranjan; Wang, Qin-Ting; Zhao, Shuai; Wall, Alissa L.; Strachan, Ryan T.; Staus, Dean P.; Wingler, Laura M.; Sun, Lillian D.; Sinnaeve, Justine; Choi, Minjung; Cho, Ted; Xu, Thomas T.; Hansen, Gwenn M.; Burnett, Michael B.; Lamerdin, Jane E.; Bassoni, Daniel L.; Gavino, Bryant J.; Husemoen, Gitte; Olsen, Eva K.; Franch, Thomas; Costanzi, Stefano; Chen, Xin; Lefkowitz, Robert J.


    The β2-adrenergic receptor (β2AR) has been a model system for understanding regulatory mechanisms of G-protein–coupled receptor (GPCR) actions and plays a significant role in cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases. Because all known β-adrenergic receptor drugs target the orthosteric binding site of the receptor, we set out to isolate allosteric ligands for this receptor by panning DNA-encoded small-molecule libraries comprising 190 million distinct compounds against purified human β2AR. Here, we report the discovery of a small-molecule negative allosteric modulator (antagonist), compound 15 [([4-((2S)-3-(((S)-3-(3-bromophenyl)-1-(methylamino)-1-oxopropan-2-yl)amino)-2-(2-cyclohexyl-2-phenylacetamido)-3-oxopropyl)benzamide], exhibiting a unique chemotype and low micromolar affinity for the β2AR. Binding of 15 to the receptor cooperatively enhances orthosteric inverse agonist binding while negatively modulating binding of orthosteric agonists. Studies with a specific antibody that binds to an intracellular region of the β2AR suggest that 15 binds in proximity to the G-protein binding site on the cytosolic surface of the β2AR. In cell-signaling studies, 15 inhibits cAMP production through the β2AR, but not that mediated by other Gs-coupled receptors. Compound 15 also similarly inhibits β-arrestin recruitment to the activated β2AR. This study presents an allosteric small-molecule ligand for the β2AR and introduces a broadly applicable method for screening DNA-encoded small-molecule libraries against purified GPCR targets. Importantly, such an approach could facilitate the discovery of GPCR drugs with tailored allosteric effects. PMID:28130548

  10. Small Molecule Inhibition of microRNA-210 Reprograms an Oncogenic Hypoxic Circuit. (United States)

    Costales, Matthew G; Haga, Christopher L; Velagapudi, Sai Pradeep; Childs-Disney, Jessica L; Phinney, Donald G; Disney, Matthew D


    A hypoxic state is critical to the metastatic and invasive characteristics of cancer. Numerous pathways play critical roles in cancer maintenance, many of which include noncoding RNAs such as microRNA (miR)-210 that regulates hypoxia inducible factors (HIFs). Herein, we describe the identification of a small molecule named Targapremir-210 that binds to the Dicer site of the miR-210 hairpin precursor. This interaction inhibits production of the mature miRNA, derepresses glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase 1-like enzyme (GPD1L), a hypoxia-associated protein negatively regulated by miR-210, decreases HIF-1α, and triggers apoptosis of triple negative breast cancer cells only under hypoxic conditions. Further, Targapremir-210 inhibits tumorigenesis in a mouse xenograft model of hypoxic triple negative breast cancer. Many factors govern molecular recognition of biological targets by small molecules. For protein, chemoproteomics and activity-based protein profiling are invaluable tools to study small molecule target engagement and selectivity in cells. Such approaches are lacking for RNA, leaving a void in the understanding of its druggability. We applied Chemical Cross-Linking and Isolation by Pull Down (Chem-CLIP) to study the cellular selectivity and the on- and off-targets of Targapremir-210. Targapremir-210 selectively recognizes the miR-210 precursor and can differentially recognize RNAs in cells that have the same target motif but have different expression levels, revealing this important feature for selectively drugging RNAs for the first time. These studies show that small molecules can be rapidly designed to selectively target RNAs and affect cellular responses to environmental conditions, resulting in favorable benefits against cancer. Further, they help define rules for identifying druggable targets in the transcriptome.

  11. Adsorption of small gas molecules on B36 nanocluster

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Younes Valadbeigi; Hossein Farrokhpour; Mahmoud Tabrizchi


    Adsorption of CO, N2, H2O, O2, H2 and NO molecules on B36 cluster was studied using density functional theory (DFT) with B3LYP functional and 6-311+G(d,p) basis set. Energies, enthalpies and Gibbs free energies of the adsorption processes were calculated. The thermodynamic data showed that the B36 cluster is a good adsorbent only for CO, O2 and NO molecules. The calculated energies of adsorption of N2, H2 O and H2 on the B36 cluster were positive values. CO molecule is adsorbed via the carbon atom more effectively, while the nitrogen atom of NO is adsorbed better than the oxygen atom. Also, when NO and O2 are adsorbed synchronously via both atoms, they dissociate. The edge boron atoms of the B36 cluster showed more reactivity than the inner atoms.

  12. Small-Molecule Compounds Exhibiting Target-Mediated Drug Disposition (TMDD): A Minireview. (United States)

    An, Guohua


    Nonlinearities are commonplace in pharmacokinetics, and 1 special source is the saturable binding of the drug to a high-affinity, low-capacity target, a phenomenon known as target-mediated drug disposition (TMDD). Compared with large-molecule compounds undergoing TMDD, which has been well recognized due to its high prevalence, TMDD in small-molecule compounds is more counterintuitive and has not been well appreciated. With more and more potent small-molecule drugs acting on highly specific targets being developed as well as increasingly sensitive analytical techniques becoming available, many small-molecule compounds have recently been reported to have nonlinear pharmacokinetics imparted by TMDD. To expand our current knowledge of TMDD in small-molecule compounds and increase the awareness of this clinically important phenomenon, this minireview provides an overview of the small-molecule compounds that demonstrate nonlinear pharmacokinetics imparted by TMDD. The present review also summarizes the general features of TMDD in small-molecule compounds and highlights the differences between TMDD in small-molecule compounds and large-molecule compounds. © 2016, The American College of Clinical Pharmacology.

  13. Small molecules as tracers in atmospheric secondary organic aerosol (United States)

    Yu, Ge

    Secondary organic aerosol (SOA), formed from in-air oxidation of volatile organic compounds, greatly affects human health and climate. Although substantial research has been devoted to SOA formation and evolution, the modeled and lab-generated SOA are still low in mass and degree of oxidation compared to ambient measurements. In order to compensate for these discrepancies, the aqueous processing pathway has been brought to attention. The atmospheric waters serve as aqueous reaction media for dissolved organics to undergo further oxidation, oligomerization, or other functionalization reactions, which decreases the vapor pressure while increasing the oxidation state of carbon atoms. Field evidence for aqueous processing requires the identification of tracer products such as organosulfates. We synthesized the standards for two organosulfates, glycolic acid sulfate and lactic acid sulfate, in order to measure their aerosol-state concentration from five distinct locations via filter samples. The water-extracted filter samples were analyzed by LC-MS. Lactic acid sulfate and glycolic acid sulfate were detected in urban locations in the United States, Mexico City, and Pakistan with varied concentrations, indicating their potential as tracers. We studied the aqueous processing reaction between glyoxal and nitrogen-containing species such as ammonium and amines exclusively by NMR spectrometry. The reaction products formic acid and several imidazoles along with the quantified kinetics were reported. The brown carbon generated from these reactions were quantified optically by UV-Vis spectroscopy. The organic-phase reaction between oxygen molecule and alkenes photosensitized by alpha-dicarbonyls were studied in the same manner. We observed the fast kinetics transferring alkenes to epoxides under simulated sunlight. Statistical estimations indicate a very effective conversion of aerosol-phase alkenes to epoxides, potentially forming organosulfates in a deliquescence event and

  14. Novel Small Molecule Antagonists of the Interaction of the Androgen Receptor and Transcriptional Co-regulators (United States)


    Netherlands ) (see appendices). Small Molecule Inhibitors of the Androgen Receptor Transcriptional Activity for Prostate Cancer Drug Discovery...peritoneal injection, tail injection, oral gavage, retro-orbital blood sampling, isoflurane anesthesia, CO2 euthanasia , cardiac stick, organ harvesting...Discovery Poster Award, Androgens 2008 Meeting, Rotterdam (The Netherlands ), October 2008 Novel Small Molecules Antagonists of the Interaction of

  15. Terminal moiety-driven electrical performance of asymmetric small-molecule-based organic solar cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Huang, Jianhua; Zhang, Shanlin; jiang, Bo


    With respect to the successes from symmetric small molecules, asymmetric ones have recently emerged as an alternative choice. In this paper, we present the synthesis and photovoltaic properties of four asymmetric small molecule donors. The benzo[1,2-b:4,5-b']dithiophene (BDT) end in the asymmetri...

  16. Identification of small molecule inhibitors of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and autophagy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Farkas, Thomas; Daugaard, Mads; Jaattela, Marja


    by the lack of specific small molecule inhibitors. Thus, we screened two small molecule kinase inhibitor libraries for inhibitors of rapamycin-induced autophagic flux. The three most potent inhibitors identified conferred profound inhibition of autophagic flux by inhibiting the formation of autophagosomes...

  17. Group specific internal standard technology (GSIST) for simultaneous identification and quantification of small molecules (United States)

    Adamec, Jiri; Yang, Wen-Chu; Regnier, Fred E


    Reagents and methods are provided that permit simultaneous analysis of multiple diverse small molecule analytes present in a complex mixture. Samples are labeled with chemically identical but isotopically distince forms of the labeling reagent, and analyzed using mass spectrometry. A single reagent simultaneously derivatizes multiple small molecule analytes having different reactive functional groups.

  18. Battle for the bulge: directing small molecules to DNA and RNA defects. (United States)

    Bevilacqua, Philip C


    Small molecules were tailored to specifically bind bulged DNA by complementing the geometry and nucleotide size of the bulge site. The prospect of generating small molecules that influence the secondary structure of DNA and RNA holds great promise for clinical applications.

  19. Blu-ray based optomagnetic aptasensor for detection of small molecules

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Jaeyoung; Donolato, Marco; Pinto, Alessandro


    This paper describes an aptamer-based optomagnetic biosensor for detection of a small molecule based on target binding-induced inhibition of magnetic nanoparticle (MNP) clustering. For the detection of a target small molecule, two mutually exclusive binding reactions (aptamer-target binding...

  20. Biased small-molecule ligands for selective inhibition of HIV-1 cell entry via CCR5

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berg, Christian; Spiess, Katja; von Lüttichau, Hans Rudolf;


    Since the discovery of HIV's use of CCR5 as the primary coreceptor in fusion, the focus on developing small-molecule receptor antagonists for inhibition hereof has only resulted in one single drug, Maraviroc. We therefore investigated the possibility of using small-molecule CCR5 agonists as HIV-1...

  1. Electrostatic potential of several small molecules from density functional theory

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    A number of density functional theory (DFT) methods were used to calculate the electrostatic potential for the series of molecules N2, F2, NH3, H2O, CHF3, CHCl3, C6H6, TiF4, CO(NH2)2 and C4H5N3O compared with QCISD (quadratic configuration interaction method including single and double substitutions) results. Comparisons were made between the DFT computed results and the QCISD ab initio ones and MP2 ab initio ones, compared with the root-mean-square deviation and electrostatic potential difference contours figures. It was found that the hybrid DFT method B3LYP, yields electrostatic potential in good agreement with the QCISD results. It is suggest this is a useful approach, especially for large molecules that are difficult to study by ab initio methods.

  2. Chasing the structures of small molecules in arbuscular mycorrhizal signaling. (United States)

    Bucher, Marcel; Wegmüller, Sarah; Drissner, David


    The arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM) is a symbiosis between most terrestrial plants and fungi of the ancient phylum Glomeromycota. AM improves the uptake of water and mineral nutrients, such as phosphorus (P) and nitrogen (N), of the host plant in exchange for photosynthetically fixed carbon. Successful colonization and a functional interaction between host plant and mycobiont are based upon exchange of signaling molecules at different stages of symbiosis development. Strigolactones, a novel class of plant hormones, are secreted by plant roots stimulating presymbiotic growth of AM fungi. Fungi release soluble signaling molecules, the enigmatic 'Myc factors', that activate early symbiotic root responses. Lysophosphatidylcholine is a lipophilic intraradical mycorrhizal signal triggering plant phosphate transporter gene expression late in AM development through a P-controlled transcriptional mechanism. This enables uptake of orthophosphate released from the AM fungus.

  3. Encapsulation of small ionic molecules within alpha-cyclodextrins. (United States)

    Rodriguez, Javier; Elola, M Dolores


    Results from molecular dynamics experiments pertaining to the encapsulation of ClO4- within the hydrophobic cavity of an aqueous alpha-cyclodextrin (alpha-CD) are presented. Using a biased sampling procedure, we constructed the Gibbs free energy profile associated with the complexation process. The profile presents a global minimum at the vicinity of the primary hydroxyl groups, where the ion remains tightly coordinated to four water molecules via hydrogen bonds. Our estimate for the global free energy of encapsulation yields DeltaGenc approximately -2.5 kBT. The decomposition of the average forces acting on the trapped ion reveals that the encapsulation is controlled by Coulomb interactions between the ion and OH groups in the CD, with a much smaller contribution from the solvent molecules. Changes in the previous results, arising from the partial methylation of the host CD and modifications in the charge distribution of the guest molecule are also discussed. The global picture that emerges from our results suggests that the stability of the ClO4- encapsulation involves not only the individual ion but also its first solvation shell.

  4. Direct and selective small-molecule activation of proapoptotic BAX (United States)

    Gavathiotis, Evripidis; Reyna, Denis E; Bellairs, Joseph A; Leshchiner, Elizaveta S; Walensky, Loren D


    BCL-2 family proteins are key regulators of the apoptotic pathway. Antiapoptotic members sequester the BCL-2 homology 3 (BH3) death domains of proapoptotic members such as BAX to maintain cell survival. The antiapoptotic BH3-binding groove has been successfully targeted to reactivate apoptosis in cancer. We recently identified a geographically distinct BH3-binding groove that mediates direct BAX activation, suggesting a new strategy for inducing apoptosis by flipping BAX’s ‘on switch’. Here we applied computational screening to identify a BAX activator molecule that directly and selectively activates BAX. We demonstrate by NMR and biochemical analyses that the molecule engages the BAX trigger site and promotes the functional oligomerization of BAX. The molecule does not interact with the BH3-binding pocket of antiapoptotic proteins or proapoptotic BAK and induces cell death in a BAX-dependent fashion. To our knowledge, we report the first gain-of-function molecular modulator of a BCL-2 family protein and demonstrate a new paradigm for pharmacologic induction of apoptosis. PMID:22634637

  5. Targeting the thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor with small molecule ligands and antibodies (United States)

    Davies, Terry F; Latif, Rauf


    Introduction The thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor (TSHR) is the essential molecule for thyroid growth and thyroid hormone production. Since it is also a key autoantigen in Graves’ disease and is involved in thyroid cancer pathophysiology, the targeting of the TSHR offers a logical model for disease control. Areas covered We review the structure and function of the TSHR and the progress in both small molecule ligands and TSHR antibodies for their therapeutic potential. Expert opinion Stabilization of a preferential conformation for the TSHR by allosteric ligands and TSHR antibodies with selective modulation of the signaling pathways is now possible. These tools may be the next generation of therapeutics for controlling the pathophysiological consequences mediated by the effects of the TSHR in the thyroid and other extrathyroidal tissues. PMID:25768836

  6. Structure of the myotonic dystrophy type 2 RNA and designed small molecules that reduce toxicity. (United States)

    Childs-Disney, Jessica L; Yildirim, Ilyas; Park, HaJeung; Lohman, Jeremy R; Guan, Lirui; Tran, Tuan; Sarkar, Partha; Schatz, George C; Disney, Matthew D


    Myotonic dystrophy type 2 (DM2) is an incurable neuromuscular disorder caused by a r(CCUG) expansion (r(CCUG)(exp)) that folds into an extended hairpin with periodically repeating 2×2 nucleotide internal loops (5'CCUG/3'GUCC). We designed multivalent compounds that improve DM2-associated defects using information about RNA-small molecule interactions. We also report the first crystal structure of r(CCUG) repeats refined to 2.35 Å. Structural analysis of the three 5'CCUG/3'GUCC repeat internal loops (L) reveals that the CU pairs in L1 are each stabilized by one hydrogen bond and a water-mediated hydrogen bond, while CU pairs in L2 and L3 are stabilized by two hydrogen bonds. Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations reveal that the CU pairs are dynamic and stabilized by Na(+) and water molecules. MD simulations of the binding of the small molecule to r(CCUG) repeats reveal that the lowest free energy binding mode occurs via the major groove, in which one C residue is unstacked and the cross-strand nucleotides are displaced. Moreover, we modeled the binding of our dimeric compound to two 5'CCUG/3'GUCC motifs, which shows that the scaffold on which the RNA-binding modules are displayed provides an optimal distance to span two adjacent loops.

  7. Targeted delivery as key for the success of small osteoinductive molecules. (United States)

    Balmayor, Elizabeth R


    Molecules such as growth factors, peptides and small molecules can guide cellular behavior and are thus important for tissue engineering. They are rapidly emerging as promising compounds for the regeneration of tissues of the musculoskeletal system. Growth factors have disadvantages such as high cost, short half-life, supraphysiological amounts needed, etc. Therefore, small molecules may be an alternative. These molecules have been discovered using high throughput screening. Small osteoinductive molecules exhibit several advantages over growth factors owing to their small sizes, such as high stability and non-immunogenicity. These molecules may stimulate directly signaling pathways that are important for osteogenesis. However, systemic application doesn't induce osteogenesis in most cases. Therefore, local administration is needed. This may be achieved by using a bone graft material providing additional osteoconductive properties. These graft materials can also act by themselves as a delivery matrix for targeted and local delivery. Furthermore, vascularization is necessary in the process of osteogenesis. Many of the small molecules are also capable of promoting vascularization of the tissue to be regenerated. Thus, in this review, special attention is given to molecules that are capable of inducing both angiogenesis and osteogenesis simultaneously. Finally, more recent preclinical and clinical uses in bone regeneration of those molecules are described, highlighting the needs for the clinical translation of these promising compounds.

  8. Mapping the Protein Interaction Landscape for Fully Functionalized Small-Molecule Probes in Human Cells


    Kambe, Tohru; Correia, Bruno E.; Niphakis, Micah J.; Cravatt, Benjamin F.


    Phenotypic screening provides a means to discover small molecules that perturb cell biological processes. Discerning the proteins and biochemical pathways targeted by screening hits, however, remains technically challenging. We recently described the use of small molecules bearing photoreactive groups and latent affinity handles as fully functionalized probes for integrated phenotypic screening and target identification. The general utility of such probes, or, for that matter, any small-molec...

  9. Studying small molecule-aptamer interactions using MicroScale Thermophoresis (MST). (United States)

    Entzian, Clemens; Schubert, Thomas


    Aptamers are potent and versatile binding molecules recognizing various classes of target molecules. Even challenging targets such as small molecules can be identified and bound by aptamers. Studying the interaction between aptamers and drugs, antibiotics or metabolites in detail is however difficult due to the lack of sophisticated analysis methods. Basic binding parameters of these small molecule-aptamer interactions such as binding affinity, stoichiometry and thermodynamics are elaborately to access using the state of the art technologies. The innovative MicroScale Thermophoresis (MST) is a novel, rapid and precise method to characterize these small molecule-aptamer interactions in solution at microliter scale. The technology is based on the movement of molecules through temperature gradients, a physical effect referred to as thermophoresis. The thermophoretic movement of a molecule depends - besides on its size - on charge and hydration shell. Upon the interaction of a small molecule and an aptamer, at least one of these parameters is altered, leading to a change in the movement behavior, which can be used to quantify molecular interactions independent of the size of the target molecule. The MST offers free choice of buffers, even measurements in complex bioliquids are possible. The dynamic affinity range covers the pM to mM range and is therefore perfectly suited to analyze small molecule-aptamer interactions. This section describes a protocol how quantitative binding parameters for aptamer-small molecule interactions can be obtained by MST. This is demonstrated by mapping down the binding site of the well-known ATP aptamer DH25.42 to a specific region at the adenine of the ATP molecule.

  10. Structure Prediction Based on Hydrophobic to Hydrophilic Volume Ratios in Small Molecule Amphiphilic Organic Crystals

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The structure type for the crystal of 4,4'-bis-(2-hydroxy-ethoxyl)-biphenyl 1 has been predicted by using the previously developed interfacial model for small organic molecules. Based on the calculated hydrophobic to hydrophilic volume of 1, this model predicts the crystal structure to be of lamellar or bicontinuous type, which has been confirmed by the X-ray single-crystal structure analysis (C20H26O6, monoclinic, P21/c, a = 16.084(1), b = 6.0103(4), c = 9.6410(7)(A), β = 103.014(2)°, V = 908.1(1)(A)3, Z = 2, Dc = 1.325 g/cm3, F(000)=388, μ = 0.097 mm-1, MoKα radiation, λ = 0.71073 (A), R = 0.0382 and wR = 0.0882 with I > 2σ(I) for 7121 reflections collected, 1852 unique reflections and 170 parameters). As predicted, the hydrophobic and hydrophilic portions of 1 form in the lamellae. The same interfacial model is applied to other amphilphilic small molecule organic systems for structural type prediction.

  11. Multiscale Molecular Simulation of Solution Processing of SMDPPEH: PCBM Small-Molecule Organic Solar Cells. (United States)

    Lee, Cheng-Kuang; Pao, Chun-Wei


    Solution-processed small-molecule organic solar cells are a promising renewable energy source because of their low production cost, mechanical flexibility, and light weight relative to their pure inorganic counterparts. In this work, we developed a coarse-grained (CG) Gay-Berne ellipsoid molecular simulation model based on atomistic trajectories from all-atom molecular dynamics simulations of smaller system sizes to systematically study the nanomorphology of the SMDPPEH/PCBM/solvent ternary blend during solution processing, including the blade-coating process by applying external shear to the solution. With the significantly reduced overall system degrees of freedom and computational acceleration from GPU, we were able to go well beyond the limitation of conventional all-atom molecular simulations with a system size on the order of hundreds of nanometers with mesoscale molecular detail. Our simulations indicate that, similar to polymer solar cells, the optimal blending ratio in small-molecule organic solar cells must provide the highest specific interfacial area for efficient exciton dissociation, while retaining balanced hole/electron transport pathway percolation. We also reveal that blade-coating processes have a significant impact on nanomorphology. For given donor/acceptor blending ratios, applying an external shear force can effectively promote donor/acceptor phase segregation and stacking in the SMDPPEH domains. The present study demonstrated the capability of an ellipsoid-based coarse-grained model for studying the nanomorphology evolution of small-molecule organic solar cells during solution processing/blade-coating and provided links between fabrication protocols and device nanomorphologies.

  12. Connecting synthetic chemistry decisions to cell and genome biology using small-molecule phenotypic profiling. (United States)

    Wagner, Bridget K; Clemons, Paul A


    Discovering small-molecule modulators for thousands of gene products requires multiple stages of biological testing, specificity evaluation, and chemical optimization. Many cellular profiling methods, including cellular sensitivity, gene expression, and cellular imaging, have emerged as methods to assess the functional consequences of biological perturbations. Cellular profiling methods applied to small-molecule science provide opportunities to use complex phenotypic information to prioritize and optimize small-molecule structures simultaneously against multiple biological endpoints. As throughput increases and cost decreases for such technologies, we see an emerging paradigm of using more information earlier in probe-discovery and drug-discovery efforts. Moreover, increasing access to public datasets makes possible the construction of 'virtual' profiles of small-molecule performance, even when multiplexed measurements were not performed or when multidimensional profiling was not the original intent. We review some key conceptual advances in small-molecule phenotypic profiling, emphasizing connections to other information, such as protein-binding measurements, genetic perturbations, and cell states. We argue that to maximally leverage these measurements in probe-discovery and drug-discovery requires a fundamental connection to synthetic chemistry, allowing the consequences of synthetic decisions to be described in terms of changes in small-molecule profiles. Mining such data in the context of chemical structure and synthesis strategies can inform decisions about chemistry procurement and library development, leading to optimal small-molecule screening collections.

  13. Recent advances in inorganic materials for LDI-MS analysis of small molecules. (United States)

    Shi, C Y; Deng, C H


    In this review, various inorganic materials were summarized for the analysis of small molecules by laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry (LDI-MS). Due to its tremendous advantages, such as simplicity, high speed, high throughput, small analyte volumes and tolerance towards salts, LDI-MS has been widely used in various analytes. During the ionization process, a suitable agent is required to assist the ionization, such as an appropriate matrix for matrix assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS). However, it is normally difficult to analyze small molecules with the MALDI technique because conventional organic matrices may produce matrix-related peaks in the low molecular-weight region, which limits the detection of small molecules (m/z molecules. These inorganic materials can transfer energy and improve the ionization efficiency of analytes. In addition, functionalized inorganic materials can act as both an adsorbent and an agent in the enrichment and ionization of small molecules. In this review, we mainly focus on present advances in inorganic materials for the LDI-MS analysis of small molecules in the last five years, which contains the synthetic protocols of novel inorganic materials and the detailed results achieved by inorganic materials. On the other hand, this review also summarizes the application of inorganic materials as adsorbents in the selective enrichment of small molecules, which provides a new field for the application of inorganic materials.

  14. Small-molecule activation of SERCA2a SUMOylation for the treatment of heart failure (United States)

    Kho, Changwon; Lee, Ahyoung; Jeong, Dongtak; Oh, Jae Gyun; Gorski, Przemek A.; Fish, Kenneth; Sanchez, Roberto; DeVita, Robert J.; Christensen, Geir; Dahl, Russell; Hajjar, Roger J.


    Decreased activity and expression of the cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase (SERCA2a), a critical pump regulating calcium cycling in cardiomyocyte, are hallmarks of heart failure. We have previously described a role for the small ubiquitin-like modifier type 1 (SUMO-1) as a regulator of SERCA2a and have shown that gene transfer of SUMO-1 in rodents and large animal models of heart failure restores cardiac function. Here, we identify and characterize a small molecule, N106, which increases SUMOylation of SERCA2a. This compound directly activates the SUMO-activating enzyme, E1 ligase, and triggers intrinsic SUMOylation of SERCA2a. We identify a pocket on SUMO E1 likely to be responsible for N106's effect. N106 treatment increases contractile properties of cultured rat cardiomyocytes and significantly improves ventricular function in mice with heart failure. This first-in-class small-molecule activator targeting SERCA2a SUMOylation may serve as a potential therapeutic strategy for treatment of heart failure. PMID:26068603

  15. High Speed Development and Synthesis of Novel Small Molecule Libraries

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    @@ Combinatorial chemistry has produced libraries of millions of compounds in the last decade. Screening of those compounds, unfortunately, has not yet yielded as many new drug candidates as initially expected. Among a number of possible reasons, one is that many libraries combinatorial chemistry produced in the early periods are of the nature of linear, flat, and flexible molecules such as peptides and oligonucleotides, which do not have the desired properties to selectively interact with their targets to yield high quality hits and leads. In order to increase the number of quality hits and leads, rigid, structural featurerich and drug-like compound libraries are highly desirable. Design and development of structural features-rich and natural product-like combinatorial libraries, as well as high speed library production using modern solution and solid phase synthesis techniques such as IRORI's Directed Sorting technology, will be discussed.

  16. High Speed Development and Synthesis of Novel Small Molecule Libraries

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XIAO; Xiao-Yi


    Combinatorial chemistry has produced libraries of millions of compounds in the last decade. Screening of those compounds, unfortunately, has not yet yielded as many new drug candidates as initially expected. Among a number of possible reasons, one is that many libraries combinatorial chemistry produced in the early periods are of the nature of linear, flat, and flexible molecules such as peptides and oligonucleotides, which do not have the desired properties to selectively interact with their targets to yield high quality hits and leads. In order to increase the number of quality hits and leads, rigid, structural featurerich and drug-like compound libraries are highly desirable. Design and development of structural features-rich and natural product-like combinatorial libraries, as well as high speed library production using modern solution and solid phase synthesis techniques such as IRORI's Directed Sorting technology, will be discussed.  ……

  17. Stereoselective Modulation of P-Glycoprotein by Chiral Small Molecules. (United States)

    Carocci, Alessia; Catalano, Alessia; Turi, Francesco; Lovece, Angelo; Cavalluzzi, Maria M; Bruno, Claudio; Colabufo, Nicola A; Contino, Marialessandra; Perrone, Maria G; Franchini, Carlo; Lentini, Giovanni


    Inhibition of drug efflux pumps such as P-glycoprotein (P-gp) is an approach toward combating multidrug resistance, which is a significant hurdle in current cancer treatments. To address this, N-substituted aryloxymethyl pyrrolidines were designed and synthesized in their homochiral forms in order to investigate the stereochemical requirements for the binding site of P-gp. Our study provides evidence that the chiral property of molecules could be a strategy for improving the capacity for interacting with P-gp, as the most active compounds of the series stereoselectively modulated this efflux pump. The naphthalene-1-yl analogue (R)-2-[(2,3-dichlorophenoxy)methyl]-1-(naphthalen-1-ylmethyl)pyrrolidine) [(R)-7 a] emerged foremost for its potency and stereoselectivity toward P-gp, with the S enantiomer being nearly inactive. The modulation of P-gp by (R)-7 a involved consumption of ATP, thus demonstrating that the compound behaves as a P-gp substrate.

  18. Dissociative chemisorption dynamics of small molecules on metal surfaces

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIANG Bin; XIE DaiQian


    Much progress has been achieved for both experimental and theoretical studies on the dissociative chemisorption of molecules on surfaces.Quantum state-resolved experimental data has provided unprecedented details for these fundamental steps in heterogeneous catalysis,while the quantitative dynamics is still not fully understood in theory.An in-depth understanding of experimental observations relies on accurate dynamical calculations,in which the potential energy surface and adequate quantum mechanical implementation are desired.This article summarizes the current methodologies on the construction of potential energy surfaces and the quantum mechanical treatments,some of which are promising for future applications.The challenges in this field are also addressed.

  19. Small Molecule Inhibitors of BAF; A Promising Family of Compounds in HIV-1 Latency Reversal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mateusz Stoszko


    Full Text Available Persistence of latently infected cells in presence of Anti-Retroviral Therapy presents the main obstacle to HIV-1 eradication. Much effort is thus placed on identification of compounds capable of HIV-1 latency reversal in order to render infected cells susceptible to viral cytopathic effects and immune clearance. We identified the BAF chromatin remodeling complex as a key player required for maintenance of HIV-1 latency, highlighting its potential as a molecular target for inhibition in latency reversal. Here, we screened a recently identified panel of small molecule inhibitors of BAF (BAFi's for potential to activate latent HIV-1. Latency reversal was strongly induced by BAFi's Caffeic Acid Phenethyl Ester and Pyrimethamine, two molecules previously characterized for clinical application. BAFi's reversed HIV-1 latency in cell line based latency models, in two ex vivo infected primary cell models of latency, as well as in HIV-1 infected patient's CD4+ T cells, without inducing T cell proliferation or activation. BAFi-induced HIV-1 latency reversal was synergistically enhanced upon PKC pathway activation and HDAC-inhibition. Therefore BAFi's constitute a promising family of molecules for inclusion in therapeutic combinatorial HIV-1 latency reversal.

  20. Identification of Small Molecule Modulators of MicroRNA by Library Screening. (United States)

    Xiao, Zhangang; Chen, Yangchao


    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) function as oncogenes or tumor suppressors and are dysregulated in cancer. miRNAs therefore represent promising therapeutic targets for cancer. Small molecules that could modulate the expression of miRNAs would thus have potential as anticancer agents. Library screening of small molecules targeting miRNAs is a useful technology platform for anticancer drug development. Here, we describe a hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cell-based luciferase reporter system which could be used to screen for small molecule modulators of tumor suppressor microRNA-34a.

  1. Characterization of the Hole Transport and Electrical Properties in the Small-Molecule Organic Semiconductors (United States)

    Wang, L. G.; Zhu, J. J.; Liu, X. L.; Cheng, L. F.


    In this paper, we investigate the hole transport and electrical properties in a small-molecule organic material N, N'-bis(1-naphthyl)- N, N'-diphenyl-1,1'-biphenyl-4,4'-diamine (NPB), which is frequently used in organic light-emitting diodes. It is shown that the thickness-dependent current density versus voltage ( J- V) characteristics of sandwich-type NPB-based hole-only devices cannot be described well using the conventional mobility model without carrier density or electric field dependence. However, a consistent and excellent description of the thickness-dependent and temperature-dependent J- V characteristics of NPB hole-only devices can be obtained with a single set of parameters by using our recently introduced improved model that take into account the temperature, carrier density, and electric field dependence of the mobility. For the small-molecule organic semiconductor studied, we find that the width of the Gaussian distribution of density of states σ and the lattice constant a are similar to the values reported for conjugated polymers. Furthermore, we show that the boundary carrier density has an important effect on the J- V characteristics. Both the maximum of carrier density and the minimum of electric field appear near the interface of NPB hole-only devices.

  2. iPSCs and small molecules: a reciprocal effort towards better approaches for drug discovery

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ru ZHANG; Li-hong ZHANG; Xin XIE


    The revolutionary induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology provides a new path for cell replacement therapies and drug screening.Patient-specific iPSCs and subsequent differentiated cells manifesting disease phenotypes will finally position human disease pathology at the core of drug discovery.Cells used to test the toxic effects of drugs can also be generated from normal iPSCs and provide a much more accurate and cost-effective system than many animal models.Here,we highlight the recent progress in iPSC-based cell therapy,disease modeling and drug evaluations.In addition,we discuss the use of small molecule drugs to improve the generation of iPSCs and understand the reprogramming mechanism.It is foreseeable that the interplay between iPSC technology and small molecule compounds will push forward the applications of iPSC-based therapy and screening systems in the real world and eventually revolutionize the methods used to treat diseases.

  3. Small-molecule modulators of Hedgehog signaling: identification and characterization of Smoothened agonists and antagonists

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shulok Janine


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Hedgehog (Hh signaling pathway is vital to animal development as it mediates the differentiation of multiple cell types during embryogenesis. In adults, Hh signaling can be activated to facilitate tissue maintenance and repair. Moreover, stimulation of the Hh pathway has shown therapeutic efficacy in models of neuropathy. The underlying mechanisms of Hh signal transduction remain obscure, however: little is known about the communication between the pathway suppressor Patched (Ptc, a multipass transmembrane protein that directly binds Hh, and the pathway activator Smoothened (Smo, a protein that is related to G-protein-coupled receptors and is capable of constitutive activation in the absence of Ptc. Results We have identified and characterized a synthetic non-peptidyl small molecule, Hh-Ag, that acts as an agonist of the Hh pathway. This Hh agonist promotes cell-type-specific proliferation and concentration-dependent differentiation in vitro, while in utero it rescues aspects of the Hh-signaling defect in Sonic hedgehog-null, but not Smo-null, mouse embryos. Biochemical studies with Hh-Ag, the Hh-signaling antagonist cyclopamine, and a novel Hh-signaling inhibitor Cur61414, reveal that the action of all these compounds is independent of Hh-protein ligand and of the Hh receptor Ptc, as each binds directly to Smo. Conclusions Smo can have its activity modulated directly by synthetic small molecules. These studies raise the possibility that Hh signaling may be regulated by endogenous small molecules in vivo and provide potent compounds with which to test the therapeutic value of activating the Hh-signaling pathway in the treatment of traumatic and chronic degenerative conditions.

  4. Developing an Efficient and General Strategy for Immobilization of Small Molecules onto Microarrays Using Isocyanate Chemistry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chenggang Zhu


    Full Text Available Small-molecule microarray (SMM is an effective platform for identifying lead compounds from large collections of small molecules in drug discovery, and efficient immobilization of molecular compounds is a pre-requisite for the success of such a platform. On an isocyanate functionalized surface, we studied the dependence of immobilization efficiency on chemical residues on molecular compounds, terminal residues on isocyanate functionalized surface, lengths of spacer molecules, and post-printing treatment conditions, and we identified a set of optimized conditions that enable us to immobilize small molecules with significantly improved efficiencies, particularly for those molecules with carboxylic acid residues that are known to have low isocyanate reactivity. We fabricated microarrays of 3375 bioactive compounds on isocyanate functionalized glass slides under these optimized conditions and confirmed that immobilization percentage is over 73%.

  5. Developing an Efficient and General Strategy for Immobilization of Small Molecules onto Microarrays Using Isocyanate Chemistry. (United States)

    Zhu, Chenggang; Zhu, Xiangdong; Landry, James P; Cui, Zhaomeng; Li, Quanfu; Dang, Yongjun; Mi, Lan; Zheng, Fengyun; Fei, Yiyan


    Small-molecule microarray (SMM) is an effective platform for identifying lead compounds from large collections of small molecules in drug discovery, and efficient immobilization of molecular compounds is a pre-requisite for the success of such a platform. On an isocyanate functionalized surface, we studied the dependence of immobilization efficiency on chemical residues on molecular compounds, terminal residues on isocyanate functionalized surface, lengths of spacer molecules, and post-printing treatment conditions, and we identified a set of optimized conditions that enable us to immobilize small molecules with significantly improved efficiencies, particularly for those molecules with carboxylic acid residues that are known to have low isocyanate reactivity. We fabricated microarrays of 3375 bioactive compounds on isocyanate functionalized glass slides under these optimized conditions and confirmed that immobilization percentage is over 73%.

  6. Developing an Efficient and General Strategy for Immobilization of Small Molecules onto Microarrays Using Isocyanate Chemistry (United States)

    Zhu, Chenggang; Zhu, Xiangdong; Landry, James P.; Cui, Zhaomeng; Li, Quanfu; Dang, Yongjun; Mi, Lan; Zheng, Fengyun; Fei, Yiyan


    Small-molecule microarray (SMM) is an effective platform for identifying lead compounds from large collections of small molecules in drug discovery, and efficient immobilization of molecular compounds is a pre-requisite for the success of such a platform. On an isocyanate functionalized surface, we studied the dependence of immobilization efficiency on chemical residues on molecular compounds, terminal residues on isocyanate functionalized surface, lengths of spacer molecules, and post-printing treatment conditions, and we identified a set of optimized conditions that enable us to immobilize small molecules with significantly improved efficiencies, particularly for those molecules with carboxylic acid residues that are known to have low isocyanate reactivity. We fabricated microarrays of 3375 bioactive compounds on isocyanate functionalized glass slides under these optimized conditions and confirmed that immobilization percentage is over 73%. PMID:26999137

  7. Discovery and demonstration of small circular DNA molecules derived from Chinese tomato yellow leaf curl virus

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Tomato yellow leaf curl viruses belong to Begomoviruses of geminiviruses.In this work, we first found and demonstrated that the small circular DNA molecules were derived from Chinese tomato yellow leaf curl viruses (TYLCV-CHI).These small circular DNA molecules are about 1.3 kb, which are half the full-length of TYLCV-CHI DNA A.It was shown by sequence determination and analysis that there was unknown-origin sequence insertion in the middle of the small molecules.These sequences of unknown-origin were neither homologous to DNA A nor to DNA B, and were formed by recombination of virus DNA and plant DNA.Although various defective molecules contained different unknown-origin sequence insertion, all the molecules contained the intergenic region and part of the AC1(Rep) gene.But they did not contain full ORF.

  8. A small-molecule dye for NIR-II imaging. (United States)

    Antaris, Alexander L; Chen, Hao; Cheng, Kai; Sun, Yao; Hong, Guosong; Qu, Chunrong; Diao, Shuo; Deng, Zixin; Hu, Xianming; Zhang, Bo; Zhang, Xiaodong; Yaghi, Omar K; Alamparambil, Zita R; Hong, Xuechuan; Cheng, Zhen; Dai, Hongjie


    Fluorescent imaging of biological systems in the second near-infrared window (NIR-II) can probe tissue at centimetre depths and achieve micrometre-scale resolution at depths of millimetres. Unfortunately, all current NIR-II fluorophores are excreted slowly and are largely retained within the reticuloendothelial system, making clinical translation nearly impossible. Here, we report a rapidly excreted NIR-II fluorophore (∼90% excreted through the kidneys within 24 h) based on a synthetic 970-Da organic molecule (CH1055). The fluorophore outperformed indocyanine green (ICG)-a clinically approved NIR-I dye-in resolving mouse lymphatic vasculature and sentinel lymphatic mapping near a tumour. High levels of uptake of PEGylated-CH1055 dye were observed in brain tumours in mice, suggesting that the dye was detected at a depth of ∼4 mm. The CH1055 dye also allowed targeted molecular imaging of tumours in vivo when conjugated with anti-EGFR Affibody. Moreover, a superior tumour-to-background signal ratio allowed precise image-guided tumour-removal surgery.

  9. Small molecule modulators of histone acetyltransferase p300. (United States)

    Balasubramanyam, Karanam; Swaminathan, V; Ranganathan, Anupama; Kundu, Tapas K


    Histone acetyltransferases (HATs) are a group of enzymes that play a significant role in the regulation of gene expression. These enzymes covalently modify the N-terminal lysine residues of histones by the addition of acetyl groups from acetyl-CoA. Dysfunction of these enzymes is often associated with the manifestation of several diseases, predominantly cancer. Here we report that anacardic acid from cashew nut shell liquid is a potent inhibitor of p300 and p300/CBP-associated factor histone acetyltranferase activities. Although it does not affect DNA transcription, HAT-dependent transcription from a chromatin template was strongly inhibited by anacardic acid. Furthermore, we describe the design and synthesis of an amide derivative N-(4-chloro-3-trifluoromethyl-phenyl)-2-ethoxy-6-pentadecyl-benzamide (CTPB) using anacardic acid as a synthon, which remarkably activates p300 HAT activity but not that of p300/CBP-associated factor. Although CTPB does not affect DNA transcription, it enhances the p300 HAT-dependent transcriptional activation from in vitro assembled chromatin template. However, it has no effect on histone deacetylase activity. These compounds would be useful as biological switching molecules for probing into the role of p300 in transcriptional studies and may also be useful as new chemical entities for the development of anticancer drugs.

  10. A small-molecule dye for NIR-II imaging (United States)

    Antaris, Alexander L.; Chen, Hao; Cheng, Kai; Sun, Yao; Hong, Guosong; Qu, Chunrong; Diao, Shuo; Deng, Zixin; Hu, Xianming; Zhang, Bo; Zhang, Xiaodong; Yaghi, Omar K.; Alamparambil, Zita R.; Hong, Xuechuan; Cheng, Zhen; Dai, Hongjie


    Fluorescent imaging of biological systems in the second near-infrared window (NIR-II) can probe tissue at centimetre depths and achieve micrometre-scale resolution at depths of millimetres. Unfortunately, all current NIR-II fluorophores are excreted slowly and are largely retained within the reticuloendothelial system, making clinical translation nearly impossible. Here, we report a rapidly excreted NIR-II fluorophore (~90% excreted through the kidneys within 24 h) based on a synthetic 970-Da organic molecule (CH1055). The fluorophore outperformed indocyanine green (ICG)--a clinically approved NIR-I dye--in resolving mouse lymphatic vasculature and sentinel lymphatic mapping near a tumour. High levels of uptake of PEGylated-CH1055 dye were observed in brain tumours in mice, suggesting that the dye was detected at a depth of ~4 mm. The CH1055 dye also allowed targeted molecular imaging of tumours in vivo when conjugated with anti-EGFR Affibody. Moreover, a superior tumour-to-background signal ratio allowed precise image-guided tumour-removal surgery.

  11. Ocean metabolism and dissolved organic matter: How do small dissolved molecules persist in the ocean? (United States)

    Benner, Ronald


    The ocean reservoir of dissolved organic matter (DOM) is among the largest global reservoirs (~700 Pg C) of reactive organic carbon. Marine primary production (~50 Pg C/yr) by photosynthetic microalgae and cyanobacteria is the major source of organic matter to the ocean and the principal substrate supporting marine food webs. The direct release of DOM from phytoplankton and other organisms as well as a variety of other processes, such as predation and viral lysis, contribute to the ocean DOM reservoir. Continental runoff and atmospheric deposition are relatively minor sources of DOM to the ocean, but some components of this material appear to be resistant to decomposition and to have a long residence time in the ocean. Concentrations of DOM are highest in surface waters and decrease with depth, a pattern that reflects the sources and diagenesis of DOM in the upper ocean. Most (70-80%) marine DOM exists as small molecules of low molecular weight (1 kDalton) DOM is relatively enriched in major biochemicals, such as combined neutral sugars and amino acids, and is more bioavailable than low-molecular-weight DOM. The observed relationships among the size, composition, and reactivity of DOM have led to the size-reactivity continuum model, which postulates that diagenetic processes lead to the production of smaller molecules that are structurally altered and resistant to microbial degradation. The radiocarbon content of these small dissolved molecules also indicates these are the most highly aged components of DOM. Chemical signatures of bacteria are abundant in DOM and increase during diagenesis, indicating bacteria are an important source of slowly cycling biochemicals. Recent analyses of DOM isolates by ultrahigh-resolution mass spectrometry have revealed an incredibly diverse mixture of molecules. Carboxyl-rich alicyclic molecules are abundant in DOM, and they appear to be derived from diagenetically-altered terpenoids, such as sterols and hopanoids. Thermally

  12. Structure-property relationships: asymmetric alkylphenyl-substituted anthracene molecules for use in small-molecule solar cells. (United States)

    Kim, Yu Jin; Ahn, Eun Soo; Jang, Sang Hun; An, Tae Kyu; Kwon, Soon-Ki; Chung, Dae Sung; Kim, Yun-Hi; Park, Chan Eon


    Two asymmetric anthracene-based organic molecules, NDHPEA and TNDHPEA, were prepared without or with a thiophene spacer between the anthracene and naphthalene units. These asymmetric oligomers displayed different degrees of coplanarity, as evidenced by differences in the dihedral angles calculated by using DFT. Differential scanning calorimetry and XRD studies were used to probe the crystallization characteristics and molecular packing structures in the active layers. The coplanarity of the molecules in the asymmetric structure significantly affected the crystallization behavior and the formation of crystalline domains in the solid state. The small-molecule crystalline properties were correlated with the device physics by determining the J-V characteristics and hole mobilities of the devices.

  13. Matrix Infrared Spectroscopic and Computational Investigations of Novel Small Uranium Containing Molecules - Final Technical Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andrews, Lester


    Direct reactions of f-element uranium, thorium and lanthanide metal atoms were investigated with small molecules. These metal atoms were generated by laser ablation and mixed with the reagent molecules then condensed with noble gases at 4K. The products were analyzed by absorption of infrared light to measure vibrational frequencies which were confirmed by quantum chemical calculations. We have learned more about the reactivity of uranium atoms with common molecules, which will aid in the develolpment of further applications of uranium.

  14. Large Scale Nanoparticle Screening for Small Molecule Analysis in Laser Desorption Ionization Mass Spectrometry. (United States)

    Yagnik, Gargey B; Hansen, Rebecca L; Korte, Andrew R; Reichert, Malinda D; Vela, Javier; Lee, Young Jin


    Nanoparticles (NPs) have been suggested as efficient matrixes for small molecule profiling and imaging by laser-desorption ionization mass spectrometry (LDI-MS), but so far there has been no systematic study comparing different NPs in the analysis of various classes of small molecules. Here, we present a large scale screening of 13 NPs for the analysis of two dozen small metabolite molecules. Many NPs showed much higher LDI efficiency than organic matrixes in positive mode and some NPs showed comparable efficiencies for selected analytes in negative mode. Our results suggest that a thermally driven desorption process is a key factor for metal oxide NPs, but chemical interactions are also very important, especially for other NPs. The screening results provide a useful guideline for the selection of NPs in the LDI-MS analysis of small molecules.

  15. Methods to enable the design of bioactive small molecules targeting RNA (United States)

    Disney, Matthew D.; Yildirim, Ilyas; Childs-Disney, Jessica L.


    RNA is an immensely important target for small molecule therapeutics or chemical probes of function. However, methods that identify, annotate, and optimize RNA-small molecule interactions that could enable the design of compounds that modulate RNA function are in their infancies. This review describes recent approaches that have been developed to understand and optimize RNA motif-small molecule interactions, including Structure-Activity Relationships Through Sequencing (StARTS), quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR), chemical similarity searching, structure-based design and docking, and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Case studies described include the design of small molecules targeting RNA expansions, the bacterial A-site, viral RNAs, and telomerase RNA. These approaches can be combined to afford a synergistic method to exploit the myriad of RNA targets in the transcriptome. PMID:24357181

  16. Synthesis of many different types of organic small molecules using one automated process. (United States)

    Li, Junqi; Ballmer, Steven G; Gillis, Eric P; Fujii, Seiko; Schmidt, Michael J; Palazzolo, Andrea M E; Lehmann, Jonathan W; Morehouse, Greg F; Burke, Martin D


    Small-molecule synthesis usually relies on procedures that are highly customized for each target. A broadly applicable automated process could greatly increase the accessibility of this class of compounds to enable investigations of their practical potential. Here we report the synthesis of 14 distinct classes of small molecules using the same fully automated process. This was achieved by strategically expanding the scope of a building block-based synthesis platform to include even C(sp3)-rich polycyclic natural product frameworks and discovering a catch-and-release chromatographic purification protocol applicable to all of the corresponding intermediates. With thousands of compatible building blocks already commercially available, many small molecules are now accessible with this platform. More broadly, these findings illuminate an actionable roadmap to a more general and automated approach for small-molecule synthesis. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  17. Biomedical application of MALDI mass spectrometry for small-molecule analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kampen, J.J. van; Burgers, P.C.; Groot, R. de; Gruters, R.A.; Luider, T.M.


    Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) mass spectrometry (MS) is an emerging analytical tool for the analysis of molecules with molar masses below 1,000 Da; that is, small molecules. This technique offers rapid analysis, high sensitivity, low sample consumption, a relative high toleranc

  18. Biomedical application of MALDI mass spectrometry for small-molecule analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kampen, J.J. van; Burgers, P.C.; Groot, R. de; Gruters, R.A.; Luider, T.M.


    Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) mass spectrometry (MS) is an emerging analytical tool for the analysis of molecules with molar masses below 1,000 Da; that is, small molecules. This technique offers rapid analysis, high sensitivity, low sample consumption, a relative high

  19. Introducing a high gravity field to enhance infiltration of small molecules into polyelectrolyte multilayers. (United States)

    Liu, Xiaolin; Zhao, Kun; Jiang, Chao; Wang, Yue; Shao, Lei; Zhang, Yajun; Shi, Feng


    Loading functional small molecules into nano-thin films is fundamental to various research fields such as membrane separation, molecular imprinting, interfacial reaction, drug delivery etc. Currently, a general demand for enhancing the loading rate without affecting the film structures exists in most infiltration phenomena. To handle this issue, we have introduced a process intensification method of a high gravity technique, which is a versatile energy form of mechanical field well-established in industry, into the investigations on diffusion/infiltration at the molecular level. By taking a polyelectrolyte multilayer as a model thin film and a photo-reactive molecule, 4,4'-diazostilbene-2,2'-disulfonic acid disodium salt (DAS), as a model small functional molecule, we have demonstrated remarkably accelerated adsorption/infiltration of DAS into a poly(allylamine hydrochloride) (PAH)/poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) multilayer by as high as 20-fold; meanwhile, both the film property of the multilayer and photoresponsive-crosslinking function of DAS were not disturbed. Furthermore, the infiltration of DAS and the surface morphology of the multilayer could be tuned based on their high dependence on the intensity of the high gravity field regarding different rotating speeds. The mechanism of the accelerated adsorption/infiltration under the high gravity field was interpreted by the increased turbulence of the diffusing layer with the thinned laminar boundary layer and the stepwise delivery of the local concentration gradient from the solution to the interior of the multilayer. The introduction of mechanical field provides a simple and versatile strategy to address the paradox of the contradictory loading amount and loading rate, and thus to promote applications of various membrane processes.

  20. In vitro and in vivo activity of a novel antifungal small molecule against Candida infections.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Sze Wah Wong

    Full Text Available Candida is the most common fungal pathogen of humans worldwide and has become a major clinical problem because of the growing number of immunocompromised patients, who are susceptible to infection. Moreover, the number of available antifungals is limited, and antifungal-resistant Candida strains are emerging. New and effective antifungals are therefore urgently needed. Here, we discovered a small molecule with activity against Candida spp. both in vitro and in vivo. We screened a library of 50,240 small molecules for inhibitors of yeast-to-hypha transition, a major virulence attribute of Candida albicans. This screening identified 20 active compounds. Further examination of the in vitro antifungal and anti-biofilm properties of these compounds, using a range of Candida spp., led to the discovery of SM21, a highly potent antifungal molecule (minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC 0.2-1.6 µg/ml. In vitro, SM21 was toxic to fungi but not to various human cell lines or bacterial species and was active against Candida isolates that are resistant to existing antifungal agents. Moreover, SM21 was relatively more effective against biofilms of Candida spp. than the current antifungal agents. In vivo, SM21 prevented the death of mice in a systemic candidiasis model and was also more effective than the common antifungal nystatin at reducing the extent of tongue lesions in a mouse model of oral candidiasis. Propidium iodide uptake assay showed that SM21 affected the integrity of the cell membrane. Taken together, our results indicate that SM21 has the potential to be developed as a novel antifungal agent for clinical use.

  1. Elasticity Dominated Surface Segregation of Small Molecules in Polymer Mixtures (United States)

    Krawczyk, Jarosław; Croce, Salvatore; McLeish, T. C. B.; Chakrabarti, Buddhapriya


    We study the phenomenon of migration of the small molecular weight component of a binary polymer mixture to the free surface using mean field and self-consistent field theories. By proposing a free energy functional that incorporates polymer-matrix elasticity explicitly, we compute the migrant volume fraction and show that it decreases significantly as the sample rigidity is increased. A wetting transition, observed for high values of the miscibility parameter can be prevented by increasing the matrix rigidity. Estimated values of the bulk modulus suggest that the effect should be observable experimentally for rubberlike materials. This provides a simple way of controlling surface migration in polymer mixtures and can play an important role in industrial formulations, where surface migration often leads to decreased product functionality.

  2. UP-scaling of inverted small molecule based organic solar cells


    Patil, Bhushan Ramesh; Madsen, Morten


    Organic solar cells (OSC), in spite of being a promising technology, still face challenges regarding large-scale fabrication. Although efficiencies of up to 12 % has been reached for small molecule OSC, their performance, both in terms of device efficiency and stability, is significantly reduced during up-scaling processes. The work presented here is focused on an approach towards up-scaling of small molecule based OSC with inverted device configuration. Bilayer OSC from Tetraphenyldibenzoper...

  3. A-D-A small molecules for solution-processed organic photovoltaic cells. (United States)

    Ni, Wang; Wan, Xiangjian; Li, Miaomiao; Wang, Yunchuang; Chen, Yongsheng


    A-D-A small molecules have drawn more and more attention in solution-processed organic solar cells due to the advantages of a diversity of structures, easy control of energy levels, etc. Recently, a power conversion efficiency of nearly 10% has been achieved through careful material design and device optimization. This feature article reviews recent representative progress in the design and application of A-D-A small molecules in organic photovoltaic cells.

  4. LC-MSMS identification of small molecules; X-Rank, a robust library search algorithm


    Mylonas, Roman


    Identification of small molecules is of major importance for many applications. Liquid Chromatography Tandem Mass spectrometry (LC- MSMS) is gaining increasing interest in the field of small molecule identification. LC-MSMS has a broad range of detection, is sensitive and does not need special sample pre-processing. As a major chal- lenge, spectra of the same compound can show great variability across acquisitions. High spectra variability limits the use of LC-MSMS for library search identifi...

  5. Impact of diffusion barriers to small cytotoxic molecules on the efficacy of immunotherapy in breast cancer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiranmoy Das

    Full Text Available Molecular-focused cancer therapies, e.g., molecularly targeted therapy and immunotherapy, so far demonstrate only limited efficacy in cancer patients. We hypothesize that underestimating the role of biophysical factors that impact the delivery of drugs or cytotoxic cells to the target sites (for associated preferential cytotoxicity or cell signaling modulation may be responsible for the poor clinical outcome. Therefore, instead of focusing exclusively on the investigation of molecular mechanisms in cancer cells, convection-diffusion of cytotoxic molecules and migration of cancer-killing cells within tumor tissue should be taken into account to improve therapeutic effectiveness. To test this hypothesis, we have developed a mathematical model of the interstitial diffusion and uptake of small cytotoxic molecules secreted by T-cells, which is capable of predicting breast cancer growth inhibition as measured both in vitro and in vivo. Our analysis shows that diffusion barriers of cytotoxic molecules conspire with γδ T-cell scarcity in tissue to limit the inhibitory effects of γδ T-cells on cancer cells. This may increase the necessary ratios of γδ T-cells to cancer cells within tissue to unrealistic values for having an intended therapeutic effect, and decrease the effectiveness of the immunotherapeutic treatment.

  6. Zebrafish small molecule screens: Taking the phenotypic plunge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles H. Williams


    Full Text Available Target based chemical screens are a mainstay of modern drug discovery, but the effectiveness of this reductionist approach is being questioned in light of declines in pharmaceutical R & D efficiency. In recent years, phenotypic screens have gained increasing acceptance as a complementary/alternative approach to early drug discovery. We discuss the various model organisms used in phenotypic screens, with particular focus on zebrafish, which has emerged as a leading model of in vivo phenotypic screens. Additionally, we anticipate therapeutic opportunities, particularly in orphan disease space, in the context of rapid advances in human Mendelian genetics, electronic health record (EHR-enabled genome–phenome associations, and genome editing.

  7. Silver nanoislands on cellulose fibers for chromatographic separation and ultrasensitive detection of small molecules

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hyukjin Jung; Moonseong Park; Minhee Kang; Ki-Hun Jeong


    High-throughput small-molecule assays play essential roles in biomedical diagnosis,drug discovery,environmental analysis,and physiological function research.Nanoplasmonics holds a great potential for the label-free detection of small molecules at extremely low concentrations.Here,we report the development of nanoplasmonic paper (NP-paper) for the rapid separation and ultrasensitive detection of mixed small molecules.NP-paper employs nanogap-rich silver nanoislands on cellulose fibers,which were simply fabricated at the wafer level by using low-temperature solid-state dewetting of a thin silver film.The nanoplasmonic detection allows for the scalable quantification and identification of small molecules over broad concentration ranges.Moreover,the combination of chromatographic separation and nanoplasmonic detection allows both the highly sensitive fluorescence detection of mixed small molecules at the attogram level and the label-free detection at the sub-nanogram level based on surface-enhanced Raman scattering.This novel material provides a new diagnostic platform for the high-throughput,low-cost,and label-free screening of mixed small molecules as an alternative to conventional paper chromatography.

  8. Harnessing Connectivity in a Large-Scale Small-Molecule Sensitivity Dataset. (United States)

    Seashore-Ludlow, Brinton; Rees, Matthew G; Cheah, Jaime H; Cokol, Murat; Price, Edmund V; Coletti, Matthew E; Jones, Victor; Bodycombe, Nicole E; Soule, Christian K; Gould, Joshua; Alexander, Benjamin; Li, Ava; Montgomery, Philip; Wawer, Mathias J; Kuru, Nurdan; Kotz, Joanne D; Hon, C Suk-Yee; Munoz, Benito; Liefeld, Ted; Dančík, Vlado; Bittker, Joshua A; Palmer, Michelle; Bradner, James E; Shamji, Alykhan F; Clemons, Paul A; Schreiber, Stuart L


    Identifying genetic alterations that prime a cancer cell to respond to a particular therapeutic agent can facilitate the development of precision cancer medicines. Cancer cell-line (CCL) profiling of small-molecule sensitivity has emerged as an unbiased method to assess the relationships between genetic or cellular features of CCLs and small-molecule response. Here, we developed annotated cluster multidimensional enrichment analysis to explore the associations between groups of small molecules and groups of CCLs in a new, quantitative sensitivity dataset. This analysis reveals insights into small-molecule mechanisms of action, and genomic features that associate with CCL response to small-molecule treatment. We are able to recapitulate known relationships between FDA-approved therapies and cancer dependencies and to uncover new relationships, including for KRAS-mutant cancers and neuroblastoma. To enable the cancer community to explore these data, and to generate novel hypotheses, we created an updated version of the Cancer Therapeutic Response Portal (CTRP v2). We present the largest CCL sensitivity dataset yet available, and an analysis method integrating information from multiple CCLs and multiple small molecules to identify CCL response predictors robustly. We updated the CTRP to enable the cancer research community to leverage these data and analyses. ©2015 American Association for Cancer Research.

  9. X-ray crystallography: Assessment and validation of protein-small molecule complexes for drug discovery (United States)

    Cooper, David R.; Porebski, Przemyslaw J.; Chruszcz, Maksymilian; Minor, Wladek


    Introduction Crystallography is the key initial component for structure-based and fragment-based drug design and can often generate leads that can be developed into high potency drugs. Therefore, huge sums of money are committed based on the outcome of crystallography experiments and their interpretation. Areas covered This review discusses how to evaluate the correctness of an X-ray structure, focusing on the validation of small molecule-protein complexes. Various types of inaccuracies found within the PDB are identified and the ramifications of these errors are discussed. The reader will gain an understanding of the key parameters that need to be inspected before a structure can be used in drug discovery efforts, as well as an appreciation of the difficulties of correctly interpreting electron density for small molecules. The reader will also be introduced to methods for validating small molecules within the context of a macromolecular structure. Expert opinion One of the reasons that ligand identification and positioning, within a macromolecular crystal structure, is so difficult is that the quality of small molecules widely varies in the PDB. For this reason, the PDB can not always be considered a reliable repository of structural information pertaining to small molecules, and this makes the derivation of general principles that govern small molecule-protein interactions more difficult. PMID:21779303

  10. Using Pharmacogenomic Databases for Discovering Patient-Target Genes and Small Molecule Candidates to Cancer Therapy (United States)

    Belizário, José E.; Sangiuliano, Beatriz A.; Perez-Sosa, Marcela; Neyra, Jennifer M.; Moreira, Dayson F.


    With multiple omics strategies being applied to several cancer genomics projects, researchers have the opportunity to develop a rational planning of targeted cancer therapy. The investigation of such numerous and diverse pharmacogenomic datasets is a complex task. It requires biological knowledge and skills on a set of tools to accurately predict signaling network and clinical outcomes. Herein, we describe Web-based in silico approaches user friendly for exploring integrative studies on cancer biology and pharmacogenomics. We briefly explain how to submit a query to cancer genome databases to predict which genes are significantly altered across several types of cancers using CBioPortal. Moreover, we describe how to identify clinically available drugs and potential small molecules for gene targeting using CellMiner. We also show how to generate a gene signature and compare gene expression profiles to investigate the complex biology behind drug response using Connectivity Map. Furthermore, we discuss on-going challenges, limitations and new directions to integrate molecular, biological and epidemiological information from oncogenomics platforms to create hypothesis-driven projects. Finally, we discuss the use of Patient-Derived Xenografts models (PDXs) for drug profiling in vivo assay. These platforms and approaches are a rational way to predict patient-targeted therapy response and to develop clinically relevant small molecules drugs.

  11. Investigations on geometrical features in induced ordering of collagen by small molecules

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    B Madhan; Aruna Dhathathreyan; V Subramanian; T Ramasami


    Binding energies of the interaction of collagen like triple helical peptides with a series of polyphenols, viz. gallic acid, catechin, epigallocatechingallate and pentagalloylglucose have been computed using molecular modelling approaches. A correlation of calculated binding energies with the interfacial molecular volumes involved in the interaction is observed. Calculated interface surface areas for the binding of polyphenols with collagen-like triple helical peptides vary in the range of 60-210 Å2 and hydrogen bond lengths vary in the range of 2.7-3.4 Å. Interfacial molecular volumes can be calculated from the solvent inaccessible surface areas and hydrogen bond lengths involved in the binding of polyphenols to collagen. Molecular aggregation of collagen in the presence of some polyphenols and chromium (III) salts has been probed experimentally in monolayer systems. The monolayer arrangement of collagen seems to be influenced by the presence of small molecules like formaldehyde, gluteraldehyde, tannic acid and chromium (III) salts. A fractal structure is observed on account of two-dimensional aggregation of collagen induced by tanning species. Atomic force microscopy has been employed to probe the topographic images of two-dimensional aggregation of collagen induced by chromium (III) salts. A case is made that long-range ordering of collagen by molecular species involved in its stabilisation is influenced by molecular geometries involved in its interaction with small molecules.

  12. Identification and characterization of potent small molecule inhibitor of hemorrhagic fever New World arenaviruses. (United States)

    Bolken, Tove C; Laquerre, Sylvie; Zhang, Yuanming; Bailey, Thomas R; Pevear, Daniel C; Kickner, Shirley S; Sperzel, Lindsey E; Jones, Kevin F; Warren, Travis K; Amanda Lund, S; Kirkwood-Watts, Dana L; King, David S; Shurtleff, Amy C; Guttieri, Mary C; Deng, Yijun; Bleam, Maureen; Hruby, Dennis E


    Category A arenaviruses as defined by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) are human pathogens that could be weaponized by bioterrorists. Many of these deadly viruses require biosafety level-4 (BSL-4) containment for all laboratory work, which limits traditional laboratory high-throughput screening (HTS) for identification of small molecule inhibitors. For those reasons, a related BSL-2 New World arenavirus, Tacaribe virus, 67-78% identical to Junín virus at the amino acid level, was used in a HTS campaign where approximately 400,000 small molecule compounds were screened in a Tacaribe virus-induced cytopathic effect (CPE) assay. Compounds identified in this screen showed antiviral activity and specificity against not only Tacaribe virus, but also the Category A New World arenaviruses (Junín, Machupo, and Guanarito). Drug resistant variants were isolated, suggesting that these compounds act through inhibition of a viral protein, the viral glycoprotein (GP2), and not through cellular toxicity mechanisms. A lead compound, ST-294, has been chosen for drug development. This potent and selective compound, with good bioavailability, demonstrated protective anti-viral efficacy in a Tacaribe mouse challenge model. This series of compounds represent a new class of inhibitors that may warrant further development for potential inclusion in a strategic stockpile.

  13. A mapping of drug space from the viewpoint of small molecule metabolism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Corey Adams


    Full Text Available Small molecule drugs target many core metabolic enzymes in humans and pathogens, often mimicking endogenous ligands. The effects may be therapeutic or toxic, but are frequently unexpected. A large-scale mapping of the intersection between drugs and metabolism is needed to better guide drug discovery. To map the intersection between drugs and metabolism, we have grouped drugs and metabolites by their associated targets and enzymes using ligand-based set signatures created to quantify their degree of similarity in chemical space. The results reveal the chemical space that has been explored for metabolic targets, where successful drugs have been found, and what novel territory remains. To aid other researchers in their drug discovery efforts, we have created an online resource of interactive maps linking drugs to metabolism. These maps predict the "effect space" comprising likely target enzymes for each of the 246 MDDR drug classes in humans. The online resource also provides species-specific interactive drug-metabolism maps for each of the 385 model organisms and pathogens in the BioCyc database collection. Chemical similarity links between drugs and metabolites predict potential toxicity, suggest routes of metabolism, and reveal drug polypharmacology. The metabolic maps enable interactive navigation of the vast biological data on potential metabolic drug targets and the drug chemistry currently available to prosecute those targets. Thus, this work provides a large-scale approach to ligand-based prediction of drug action in small molecule metabolism.

  14. Small molecule inhibitors of phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) delta and gamma. (United States)

    Ameriks, Michael K; Venable, Jennifer D


    In recent years, pharmaceutical companies have increasingly focused on phosphoinositide 3-kinases delta (PI3Kdelta) and gamma (PI3Kgamma) as therapeutic targets for the treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. All class 1 PI3-kinases (alpha/beta/gamma/delta) generate phospholipid second messengers that help govern cellular processes such as migration, proliferation, and apoptosis. PI3K delta/ gamma lipid kinases are mainly restricted to the hematopoetic system whereas PI3K alpha/beta are ubiquitously expressed, thus raising potential toxicity concerns for chronic indications such as asthma and rheumatoid arthritis. Therefore, the challenge in developing a small molecule inhibitor of PI3K is to define and attain the appropriate isoform selectivity profile. Significant advances in the design of such compounds have been achieved by utilizing x-ray crystal structures of various inhibitors bound to PI3Kgamma in conjunction with pharmacophore modeling and high-throughput screening. Herein, we review the history and challenges involved with the discovery of small molecule isoform-specific PI3K inhibitors. Recent progress in the design of selective PI3Kdelta, PI3Kgamma, and PI3Kdelta/gamma dual inhibitors will be presented.

  15. (Fluorescent scattering by molecules embedded in small particles). Comprehensive report, 1977-1980

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McNulty, P.J.; Chew, H.W.


    Research to develop a model for calculating inelastic (Raman and fluorescent) scattering by active molecules which are embedded in a dielectric particle with microscopic dimensions is described. (GHT)

  16. Biomimetic Nanosensor Arrays for Selective Small Molecule Detection (United States)


    precluding the possibility of implantable or wearable sensors, and requires skilled human operators. Arrays of chemical sensors (“electronic noses...using peptide sequences that were rationally designed to mimic the putative binding sites of a human olfactory protein.16 The protein was modeled by...Apis mellifera, contains a C-terminal tail fragment that has been shown to bind to pheromones and other chemical targets.22 Four amino acid

  17. Discovery and computer aided potency optimization of a novel class of small molecule CXCR4 antagonists.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victoria Vinader

    Full Text Available Amongst the chemokine signalling axes involved in cancer, chemokine CXCL12 acting on chemokine receptor CXCR4 is particularly significant since it orchestrates migration of cancer cells in a tissue-specific metastatic process. High CXCR4 tumour expression is associated with poor prognosis of lung, brain, CNS, blood and breast cancers. We have identified a new class of small molecule CXCR4 antagonists based on the use of computational modelling studies in concert with experimental determination of in vitro activity against CXCL12-induced intracellular calcium mobilisation, proliferation and chemotaxis. Molecular modelling proved to be a useful tool in rationalising our observed potencies, as well as informing the direction of the synthetic efforts aimed at producing more potent compounds.

  18. Dichotomy of cellular inhibition by small-molecule inhibitors revealed by single-cell analysis (United States)

    Vogel, Robert M.; Erez, Amir; Altan-Bonnet, Grégoire


    Despite progress in drug development, a quantitative and physiological understanding of how small-molecule inhibitors act on cells is lacking. Here, we measure the signalling and proliferative response of individual primary T-lymphocytes to a combination of antigen, cytokine and drug. We uncover two distinct modes of signalling inhibition: digital inhibition (the activated fraction of cells diminishes upon drug treatment, but active cells appear unperturbed), versus analogue inhibition (the activated fraction is unperturbed whereas activation response is diminished). We introduce a computational model of the signalling cascade that accounts for such inhibition dichotomy, and test the model predictions for the phenotypic variability of cellular responses. Finally, we demonstrate that the digital/analogue dichotomy of cellular response as revealed on short (signal transduction) timescales, translates into similar dichotomy on longer (proliferation) timescales. Our single-cell analysis of drug action illustrates the strength of quantitative approaches to translate in vitro pharmacology into functionally relevant cellular settings. PMID:27687249

  19. Accurate on-chip measurement of the Seebeck coefficient of high mobility small molecule organic semiconductors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. N. Warwick


    Full Text Available We present measurements of the Seebeck coefficient in two high mobility organic small molecules, 2,7-dioctyl[1]benzothieno[3,2-b][1]benzothiophene (C8-BTBT and 2,9-didecyl-dinaphtho[2,3-b:2′,3′-f]thieno[3,2-b]thiophene (C10-DNTT. The measurements are performed in a field effect transistor structure with high field effect mobilities of approximately 3 cm2/V s. This allows us to observe both the charge concentration and temperature dependence of the Seebeck coefficient. We find a strong logarithmic dependence upon charge concentration and a temperature dependence within the measurement uncertainty. Despite performing the measurements on highly polycrystalline evaporated films, we see an agreement in the Seebeck coefficient with modelled values from Shi et al. [Chem. Mater. 26, 2669 (2014] at high charge concentrations. We attribute deviations from the model at lower charge concentrations to charge trapping.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chi-fei Wu; Saburo Akiyama


    The addition effects of organic small molecular substances N,N'-dicyclohexyl-benzothiazyl-2-sulfenamide (DZ) and 3,9-bis{ 1, 1-dimethyl-2[β-(3-tert-butyl-4-hydroxy-5-methylphenyl)propionyloxy]ethyl}-2,4,8, 10-tetraoxaspiro[5,5]-undecane (AO-80) on the dynamic mechanical properties of chlorinated polyethylene (CPE), chlorinated polypropylene (CPP), acrylate rubber (ACM) and their blends were investigated. In the case of compatible systems such as CPE/DZ and ACM/AO-80, the height of the loss tangent (tanδ) peak of a matrix polymer (CPE or ACM) increases, and its peak position shifts to a higher temperature with the addition of DZ or AO-80. By contrast, for incompatible CPE/AO-80, a novel transition appeared above the glass transition temperature of CPE. This additional transition was assigned to dissociation of the intermolecular hydrogen bond between the α-hydrogen of CPE and the hydroxyl groups of AO-80 within the AO-80-rich domain. This will provide a new concept for developing damping material. However, the minimum value between two tanδ peaks is lower. It was found that the temperature dependence of tanδ could be improved by adding chlorinated paraffin (CP) or ACM to CPE/AO-80. In addition, another ternary system of ACM/CPP with more AO-80 was found to be a very good self-adhesive damping material because of the appearance of a novel transition due to an interfacial layer of ACM/CPP.

  1. Using a non-spin flip model to rationalize the irregular patterns observed in the activation of the C-H and Si-H bonds of small molecules by CpMCO (M = Co, Rh) complexes. (United States)

    Castro, Guadalupe; Colmenares, Fernando


    The activation of the C-H and Si-H bonds of CH(CH3)3 and SiH(CH3)3 molecules by organometallic compounds CpMCO (M = Co, Rh) has been investigated through DFT and CASSCF-MRMP2 calculations. In particular, we have analyzed the pathways joining the lowest-lying triplet and singlet states of the reactants with the products arising from the insertion of the metal atom into the C-H or Si-H bonds of the organic molecules. Channels connecting the reactants with the inserted structure Cp(CO)H-M-C(CH3)3 through the oxidative addition of the C-H bond of the organic molecule to the metal fragment were found only for the reaction CpRhCO + CH(CH3)3. However, inserted structures could also be obtained for the interactions of SiH(CH3)3 with CpCoCO and CpRhCO by two sequential reactions involving the formation and rebounding of the radical fragments Cp(CO)H-M + Si(CH3)3. According to this two-step reaction scheme, the complex CpCoCO is unable to activate the C-H bond of the CH(CH3)3 molecule due to the high energy at which the radical fragments Cp(CO)H-M + C(CH3)3 are located. The picture attained for these interactions is consistent with the available experimental data for this kind of reaction and allows rationalization of the differences in the reactivity patterns determined for them without using spin-flip models, as has been proposed in previous studies.

  2. Combinatorics of feedback in cellular uptake and metabolism of small molecules. (United States)

    Krishna, Sandeep; Semsey, Szabolcs; Sneppen, Kim


    We analyze the connection between structure and function for regulatory motifs associated with cellular uptake and usage of small molecules. Based on the boolean logic of the feedback we suggest four classes: the socialist, consumer, fashion, and collector motifs. We find that the socialist motif is good for homeostasis of a useful but potentially poisonous molecule, whereas the consumer motif is optimal for nutrition molecules. Accordingly, examples of these motifs are found in, respectively, the iron homeostasis system in various organisms and in the uptake of sugar molecules in bacteria. The remaining two motifs have no obvious analogs in small molecule regulation, but we illustrate their behavior using analogies to fashion and obesity. These extreme motifs could inspire construction of synthetic systems that exhibit bistable, history-dependent states, and homeostasis of flux (rather than concentration).

  3. Peptidomimetic Small Molecules Disrupt Type IV Secretion System Activity in Diverse Bacterial Pathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carrie L. Shaffer


    Full Text Available Bacteria utilize complex type IV secretion systems (T4SSs to translocate diverse effector proteins or DNA into target cells. Despite the importance of T4SSs in bacterial pathogenesis, the mechanism by which these translocation machineries deliver cargo across the bacterial envelope remains poorly understood, and very few studies have investigated the use of synthetic molecules to disrupt T4SS-mediated transport. Here, we describe two synthetic small molecules (C10 and KSK85 that disrupt T4SS-dependent processes in multiple bacterial pathogens. Helicobacter pylori exploits a pilus appendage associated with the cag T4SS to inject an oncogenic effector protein (CagA and peptidoglycan into gastric epithelial cells. In H. pylori, KSK85 impedes biogenesis of the pilus appendage associated with the cag T4SS, while C10 disrupts cag T4SS activity without perturbing pilus assembly. In addition to the effects in H. pylori, we demonstrate that these compounds disrupt interbacterial DNA transfer by conjugative T4SSs in Escherichia coli and impede vir T4SS-mediated DNA delivery by Agrobacterium tumefaciens in a plant model of infection. Of note, C10 effectively disarmed dissemination of a derepressed IncF plasmid into a recipient bacterial population, thus demonstrating the potential of these compounds in mitigating the spread of antibiotic resistance determinants driven by conjugation. To our knowledge, this study is the first report of synthetic small molecules that impair delivery of both effector protein and DNA cargos by diverse T4SSs.

  4. Microfluidic delivery of small molecules into mammalian cells based on hydrodynamic focusing. (United States)

    Wang, Fen; Wang, Hao; Wang, Jun; Wang, Hsiang-Yu; Rummel, Peter L; Garimella, Suresh V; Lu, Chang


    Microfluidics-based cell assays offer high levels of automation and integration, and allow multiple assays to be run in parallel, based on reduced sample volumes. These characteristics make them attractive for studies associated with drug discovery. Controlled delivery of drug molecules or other exogenous materials into cells is a critical issue that needs to be addressed before microfluidics can serve as a viable platform for drug screening and studies. In this study, we report the application of hydrodynamic focusing for controlled delivery of small molecules into cells immobilized on the substrate of a microfluidic device. We delivered calcein AM which was permeant to the cell membrane into cells, and monitored its enzymatic conversion into fluorescent calcein during and after the delivery. Different ratios of the sample flow to the side flow were tested to determine how the conditions of hydrodynamic focusing affected the delivery. A 3D numerical model was developed to help understand the fluid flow, molecular diffusion due to hydrodynamic focusing in the microfluidic channel. The results from the simulation indicated that the calcein AM concentration on the outer surface of a cell was determined by the conditions of hydrodynamic focusing. By comparing the results from the simulation with those from the experiment, we found that the calcein AM concentration on the cell outer surface correlated very well with the amount of the molecules delivered into the cell. This suggests that hydrodynamic focusing provides an effective way for potentially quantitative delivery of exogenous molecules into cells at the single cell or subcellular level. We expect that our technique will pave the way to high-throughput drug screening and delivery on a microfluidic platform.

  5. Identification of small-molecule scaffolds for p450 inhibitors. (United States)

    von Kries, Jens P; Warrier, Thulasi; Podust, Larissa M


    Mycobacterium tuberculosis cytochrome P450 enzymes (CYP) attract ongoing interest for their pharmacological development potential, driving direct screening efforts against potential CYP targets with the ultimate goal of developing potent CYP-specific inhibitors and/or molecular probes to address M. tuberculosis biology. The property of CYP enzymes to shift the ferric heme Fe Soret band in response to ligand binding provides the basis for an experimental platform for high-throughput screening (HTS) of compound libraries to select chemotypes with high binding affinities to the target. Promising compounds can be evaluated in in vitro assays or in vivo disease models and further characterized by x-ray crystallography, leading to optimization strategies to assist drug design. Protocols are provided for compound library screening, analysis of inhibitory potential, and co-crystallization with the target CYP, as well as expression and purification of soluble CYP enzymes.

  6. Small molecule selectively suppresses MYC transcription in cancer cells. (United States)

    Bouvard, Claire; Lim, Sang Min; Ludka, John; Yazdani, Nahid; Woods, Ashley K; Chatterjee, Arnab K; Schultz, Peter G; Zhu, Shoutian


    Stauprimide is a staurosporine analog that promotes embryonic stem cell (ESC) differentiation by inhibiting nuclear localization of the MYC transcription factor NME2, which in turn results in down-regulation of MYC transcription. Given the critical role the oncogene MYC plays in tumor initiation and maintenance, we explored the potential of stauprimide as an anticancer agent. Here we report that stauprimide suppresses MYC transcription in cancer cell lines derived from distinct tissues. Using renal cancer cells, we confirmed that stauprimide inhibits NME2 nuclear localization. Gene expression analysis also confirmed the selective down-regulation of MYC target genes by stauprimide. Consistent with this activity, administration of stauprimide inhibited tumor growth in rodent xenograft models. Our study provides a unique strategy for selectively targeting MYC transcription by pharmacological means as a potential treatment for MYC-dependent tumors.

  7. Antimalarial Activity of Small-Molecule Benzothiazole Hydrazones (United States)

    Sarkar, Souvik; Siddiqui, Asim A.; Saha, Shubhra J.; De, Rudranil; Mazumder, Somnath; Banerjee, Chinmoy; Iqbal, Mohd S.; Nag, Shiladitya; Adhikari, Susanta


    We synthesized a new series of conjugated hydrazones that were found to be active against malaria parasite in vitro, as well as in vivo in a murine model. These hydrazones concentration-dependently chelated free iron and offered antimalarial activity. Upon screening of the synthesized hydrazones, compound 5f was found to be the most active iron chelator, as well as antiplasmodial. Compound 5f also interacted with free heme (KD [equilibrium dissociation constant] = 1.17 ± 0.8 μM), an iron-containing tetrapyrrole released after hemoglobin digestion by the parasite, and inhibited heme polymerization by parasite lysate. Structure-activity relationship studies indicated that a nitrogen- and sulfur-substituted five-membered aromatic ring present within the benzothiazole hydrazones might be responsible for their antimalarial activity. The dose-dependent antimalarial and heme polymerization inhibitory activities of the lead compound 5f were further validated by following [3H]hypoxanthine incorporation and hemozoin formation in parasite, respectively. It is worth mentioning that compound 5f exhibited antiplasmodial activity in vitro against a chloroquine/pyrimethamine-resistant strain of Plasmodium falciparum (K1). We also evaluated in vivo antimalarial activity of compound 5f in a murine model where a lethal multiple-drug-resistant strain of Plasmodium yoelii was used to infect Swiss albino mice. Compound 5f significantly suppressed the growth of parasite, and the infected mice experienced longer life spans upon treatment with this compound. During in vitro and in vivo toxicity assays, compound 5f showed minimal alteration in biochemical and hematological parameters compared to control. In conclusion, we identified a new class of hydrazone with therapeutic potential against malaria. PMID:27139466

  8. Comparative metabolomics and structural characterizations illuminate colibactin pathway-dependent small molecules. (United States)

    Vizcaino, Maria I; Engel, Philipp; Trautman, Eric; Crawford, Jason M


    The gene cluster responsible for synthesis of the unknown molecule "colibactin" has been identified in mutualistic and pathogenic Escherichia coli. The pathway endows its producer with a long-term persistence phenotype in the human bowel, a probiotic activity used in the treatment of ulcerative colitis, and a carcinogenic activity under host inflammatory conditions. To date, functional small molecules from this pathway have not been reported. Here we implemented a comparative metabolomics and targeted structural network analyses approach to identify a catalog of small molecules dependent on the colibactin pathway from the meningitis isolate E. coli IHE3034 and the probiotic E. coli Nissle 1917. The structures of 10 pathway-dependent small molecules are proposed based on structural characterizations and network relationships. The network will provide a roadmap for the structural and functional elucidation of a variety of other small molecules encoded by the pathway. From the characterized small molecule set, in vitro bacterial growth inhibitory and mammalian CNS receptor antagonist activities are presented.

  9. Power losses in bilayer inverted small molecule organic solar cells

    KAUST Repository

    Trinh, Cong


    Inverted bilayer organic solar cells using copper phthalocyanine (CuPc) as a donor and C60 as an acceptor with the structure: glass/indium tin oxide (ITO)/ZnO/C60/CuPc/MoO3/Al, in which the zinc oxide (ZnO) was deposited by atomic layer deposition, are compared with a conventional device: glass/ITO/CuPc/C60/bathocuproine/Al. These inverted and conventional devices give short circuit currents of 3.7 and 4.8 mA/cm 2, respectively. However, the inverted device gives a reduced photoresponse from the CuPc donor compared to that of the conventional device. Optical field models show that the arrangement of organic layers in the inverted devices leads to lower absorption of long wavelengths by the CuPc donor; the low energy portion of the spectrum is concentrated near the metal oxide electrode in both devices. © 2012 American Institute of Physics.

  10. Small molecule tyrosine kinase inhibitors in pancreatic cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sachin Gupta


    Full Text Available Sachin Gupta, Bassel F El-RayesDepartment of Hematology/Oncology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University, MI, USAAbstract: Pancreatic cancer has proven to be chemo-resistant, with gemcitabine being the only cytotoxic agent approved for advanced pancreatic cancer since 1996. Tyrosine kinase inhibitors represent a newer generation of chemotherapeutic agents targeting specific tumor pathways associated with carcinogenesis including cell cycle control, signal transduction, apoptosis and angiogenesis. These agents present a more selective way of treating pancreatic cancer. Erlotinib is the prototype of the tyrosine kinase inhibitors with proven efficacy in advanced pancreatic cancer and has been recently approved in that setting. Multiple other tyrosine kinase inhibitors targeting the VEGFR, PDGFR, and Src kinases are in various phases of clinical trials testing. The preliminary results of these trials have been disappointing. Current challenges in pancreatic cancer clinical trials testing include improving patient selection, identifying effective combinations, improving the predictive value of current preclinical models and better study designs. This review summarizes the present clinical development of tyrosine kinase inhibitors in pancreatic cancer and strategies for future drug development.Keywords: pancreatic cancer, erlotinib, tyrosine kinase inhibitors

  11. Stimulators of translation identified during a small molecule screening campaign. (United States)

    Shin, Unkyung; Williams, David E; Kozakov, Dima; Hall, David R; Beglov, Dmitri; Vajda, Sandor; Andersen, Raymond J; Pelletier, Jerry


    In screening a library of natural and synthetic products for eukaryotic translation modulators, we identified two natural products, isohymenialdisine and hymenialdisine, that exhibit stimulatory effects on translation. The characterization of these compounds led to the insight that mRNA used to program the translation extracts during high-throughput assay setup was leading to phosphorylation of eIF2α, a potent negative regulatory event that is mediated by one of four kinases. We identified double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase (PKR) as the eIF2α kinase that was being activated by exogenously added mRNA template. Characterization of the mode of action of isohymenialdisine revealed that it directly acts on PKR by inhibiting autophosphorylation, perturbs the PKR-eIF2α phosphorylation axis, and can be modeled into the PKR ATP binding site. Our results identify a source of "false positives" for high-throughput screen campaigns using translation extracts, raising a cautionary note for this type of screen.

  12. Calcium phosphate nanoparticles as versatile carrier for small and large molecules across cell membranes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sokolova, Viktoriya; Rotan, Olga; Klesing, Jan [University of Duisburg-Essen, Inorganic Chemistry and Center for Nanointegration Duisburg-Essen (CeNIDE) (Germany); Nalbant, Perihan [University of Duisburg-Essen, Faculty of Biology, Institute of Molecular Cell Biology (Germany); Buer, Jan; Knuschke, Torben; Westendorf, Astrid M. [University Hospital Essen, University of Duisburg-Essen, Institute of Medical Microbiology (Germany); Epple, Matthias, E-mail: [University of Duisburg-Essen, Inorganic Chemistry and Center for Nanointegration Duisburg-Essen (CeNIDE) (Germany)


    The successful transport of molecules across the cell membrane is a key point in biology and medicine. In most cases, molecules alone cannot penetrate the cell membrane, therefore an efficient carrier is needed. Calcium phosphate nanoparticles (diameter: 100-250 nm, depending on the functionalization) were loaded with fluorescent oligonucleotides, peptide, proteins, antibodies, polymers or porphyrins and characterized by dynamic light scattering, nanoparticle tracking analysis and scanning electron microscopy. Any excess of molecules was removed by ultracentrifugation, and the dissolved molecules at the same concentration were used as control. The uptake of such fluorescence-labeled nanoparticles into HeLa cells was monitored by fluorescence microscopy and confocal laser scanning microscopy. Calcium phosphate nanoparticles were able to transport all molecules across the cell membrane, whereas the dissolved molecules alone were taken up only to a very small extent or even not at all.

  13. Self-organizing ontology of biochemically relevant small molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chepelev Leonid L


    can ease the burden of chemical data annotators and dramatically increase their productivity. We anticipate that the use of formal logic in our proposed framework will make chemical classification criteria more transparent to humans and machines alike and will thus facilitate predictive and integrative bioactivity model development.

  14. Small Molecule Binding, Docking, and Characterization of the Interaction between Pth1 and Peptidyl-tRNA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary C. Hames


    Full Text Available Bacterial Pth1 is essential for viability. Pth1 cleaves the ester bond between the peptide and nucleotide of peptidyl-tRNA generated from aborted translation, expression of mini-genes, and short ORFs. We have determined the shape of the Pth1:peptidyl-tRNA complex using small angle neutron scattering. Binding of piperonylpiperazine, a small molecule constituent of a combinatorial synthetic library common to most compounds with inhibitory activity, was mapped to Pth1 via NMR spectroscopy. We also report computational docking results, modeling piperonylpiperazine binding based on chemical shift perturbation mapping. Overall these studies promote Pth1 as a novel antibiotic target, contribute to understanding how Pth1 interacts with its substrate, advance the current model for cleavage, and demonstrate feasibility of small molecule inhibition.

  15. Mechanistic understanding and significance of small peptides interaction with MHC class II molecules for therapeutic applications. (United States)

    Afridi, Saifullah; Hoessli, Daniel C; Hameed, Muhammad Waqar


    Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II molecules are expressed by antigen-presenting cells and stimulate CD4(+) T cells, which initiate humoral immune responses. Over the past decade, interest has developed to therapeutically impact the peptides to be exposed to CD4(+) T cells. Structurally diverse small molecules have been discovered that act on the endogenous peptide exchanger HLA-DM by different mechanisms. Exogenously delivered peptides are highly susceptible to proteolytic cleavage in vivo; however, it is only when successfully incorporated into stable MHC II-peptide complexes that these peptides can induce an immune response. Many of the small molecules so far discovered have highlighted the molecular interactions mediating the formation of MHC II-peptide complexes. As potential drugs, these small molecules open new therapeutic approaches to modulate MHC II antigen presentation pathways and influence the quality and specificity of immune responses. This review briefly introduces how CD4(+) T cells recognize antigen when displayed by MHC class II molecules, as well as MHC class II-peptide-loading pathways, structural basis of peptide binding and stabilization of the peptide-MHC complexes. We discuss the concept of MHC-loading enhancers, how they could modulate immune responses and how these molecules have been identified. Finally, we suggest mechanisms whereby MHC-loading enhancers could act upon MHC class II molecules.

  16. Crystallographic analysis of TPP riboswitch binding by small-molecule ligands discovered through fragment-based drug discovery approaches. (United States)

    Warner, Katherine Deigan; Ferré-D'Amaré, Adrian R


    Riboswitches are structured mRNA elements that regulate gene expression in response to metabolite or second-messenger binding and are promising targets for drug discovery. Fragment-based drug discovery methods have identified weakly binding small molecule "fragments" that bind a thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP) riboswitch. However, these fragments require substantial chemical elaboration into more potent, drug-like molecules. Structure determination of the fragments bound to the riboswitch is the necessary next step. In this chapter, we describe the methods for co-crystallization and structure determination of fragment-bound TPP riboswitch structures. We focus on considerations for screening crystallization conditions across multiple crystal forms and provide guidance for building the fragment into the refined crystallographic model. These methods are broadly applicable for crystallographic analyses of any small molecules that bind structured RNAs.

  17. Adsorption of small aromatic molecules on gold: a DFT localized basis set study including van der Waals effects

    CERN Document Server

    Buimaga-Iarinca, Luiza


    We compare the density functional theory (DFT) results on the adsorption of small aromatic molecules (benzene, pyridine and thiophene) on gold surfaces obtained by using three types of van der Waals exchange-correlation functionals and localized basis set calculations. We show that the value of the molecule surface binding energy depends on the interplay between the BSSE effect and the tendency of the exchange-correlation functionals to overestimate both the molecule-surface as well as the gold-gold distances within the relaxed systems. Consequently, we find that by using different types of LCAO basis sets or geometric models for the adsorption of the molecules on the surface, the binding energy can vary up to 100 %. A critical analysis of the physical parameters resulting from the calculations is presented for each exchange-correlation functional.

  18. Shutting down the pore: The search for small molecule inhibitors of the mitochondrial permeability transition. (United States)

    Šileikytė, Justina; Forte, Michael


    The mitochondrial permeability transition pore (PTP) is now recognized as playing a key role in a wide variety of human diseases whose common pathology may be based in mitochondrial dysfunction. Recently, PTP assays have been adapted to high-throughput screening approaches to identify small molecules specifically inhibiting the PTP. Following extensive secondary chemistry, the most potent inhibitors of the PTP described to date have been developed. This review will provide an overview of each of these screening efforts, use of resulting compounds in animal models of PTP-based diseases, and problems that will require further study. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'EBEC 2016: 19th European Bioenergetics Conference, Riva del Garda, Italy, July 2-6, 2016', edited by Prof. Paolo Bernardi.

  19. Inhibition of human copper trafficking by a small molecule significantly attenuates cancer cell proliferation (United States)

    Wang, Jing; Luo, Cheng; Shan, Changliang; You, Qiancheng; Lu, Junyan; Elf, Shannon; Zhou, Yu; Wen, Yi; Vinkenborg, Jan L.; Fan, Jun; Kang, Heebum; Lin, Ruiting; Han, Dali; Xie, Yuxin; Karpus, Jason; Chen, Shijie; Ouyang, Shisheng; Luan, Chihao; Zhang, Naixia; Ding, Hong; Merkx, Maarten; Liu, Hong; Chen, Jing; Jiang, Hualiang; He, Chuan


    Copper is a transition metal that plays critical roles in many life processes. Controlling the cellular concentration and trafficking of copper offers a route to disrupt these processes. Here we report small molecules that inhibit the human copper-trafficking proteins Atox1 and CCS, and so provide a selective approach to disrupt cellular copper transport. The knockdown of Atox1 and CCS or their inhibition leads to a significantly reduced proliferation of cancer cells, but not of normal cells, as well as to attenuated tumour growth in mouse models. We show that blocking copper trafficking induces cellular oxidative stress and reduces levels of cellular ATP. The reduced level of ATP results in activation of the AMP-activated protein kinase that leads to reduced lipogenesis. Both effects contribute to the inhibition of cancer cell proliferation. Our results establish copper chaperones as new targets for future developments in anticancer therapies.

  20. Small-Molecule Anticonvulsant Agents with Potent in vitro Neuroprotection and Favorable Drug-like Properties (United States)

    Smith, Garry R.; Brenneman, Douglas E.; Zhang, Yan; Du, Yanming; Reitz, Allen B.


    Severe seizure activity is associated with reoccurring cycles of excitotoxicity and oxidative stress that result in progressive neuronal damage and death. Intervention with these pathological processes is a compelling disease-modifying strategy for the treatment of seizure disorders. We have optimized a series of small molecules for neuroprotective and anticonvulsant activity as well as altered their physical properties to address potential metabolic liabilities, to improve CNS penetration and to prolong the duration of action in vivo. Utilizing phenotypic screening of hippocampal cultures with nutrient medium depleted of antioxidants as a disease model, cell death and decreased neuronal viability produced by acute treatment with glutamate or hydrogen peroxide were prevented. Modifications to our previously reported proof of concept compounds have resulted in a lead which has full neuroprotective action at anticonvulsants are feasible within a single molecular entity which also possesses favorable CNS-active drug properties in vitro and in vivo. PMID:24277343

  1. Tetrandrine identified in a small molecule screen to activate mesenchymal stem cells for enhanced immunomodulation. (United States)

    Yang, Zijiang; Concannon, John; Ng, Kelvin S; Seyb, Kathleen; Mortensen, Luke J; Ranganath, Sudhir; Gu, Fangqi; Levy, Oren; Tong, Zhixiang; Martyn, Keir; Zhao, Weian; Lin, Charles P; Glicksman, Marcie A; Karp, Jeffrey M


    Pre-treatment or priming of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) prior to transplantation can significantly augment the immunosuppressive effect of MSC-based therapies. In this study, we screened a library of 1402 FDA-approved bioactive compounds to prime MSC. We identified tetrandrine as a potential hit that activates the secretion of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), a potent immunosuppressive agent, by MSC. Tetrandrine increased MSC PGE2 secretion through the NF-κB/COX-2 signaling pathway. When co-cultured with mouse macrophages (RAW264.7), tetrandrine-primed MSC attenuated the level of TNF-α secreted by RAW264.7. Furthermore, systemic transplantation of primed MSC into a mouse ear skin inflammation model significantly reduced the level of TNF-α in the inflamed ear, compared to unprimed cells. Screening of small molecules to pre-condition cells prior to transplantation represents a promising strategy to boost the therapeutic potential of cell therapy.

  2. Inhibition of human copper trafficking by a small molecule significantly attenuates cancer cell proliferation. (United States)

    Wang, Jing; Luo, Cheng; Shan, Changliang; You, Qiancheng; Lu, Junyan; Elf, Shannon; Zhou, Yu; Wen, Yi; Vinkenborg, Jan L; Fan, Jun; Kang, Heebum; Lin, Ruiting; Han, Dali; Xie, Yuxin; Karpus, Jason; Chen, Shijie; Ouyang, Shisheng; Luan, Chihao; Zhang, Naixia; Ding, Hong; Merkx, Maarten; Liu, Hong; Chen, Jing; Jiang, Hualiang; He, Chuan


    Copper is a transition metal that plays critical roles in many life processes. Controlling the cellular concentration and trafficking of copper offers a route to disrupt these processes. Here we report small molecules that inhibit the human copper-trafficking proteins Atox1 and CCS, and so provide a selective approach to disrupt cellular copper transport. The knockdown of Atox1 and CCS or their inhibition leads to a significantly reduced proliferation of cancer cells, but not of normal cells, as well as to attenuated tumour growth in mouse models. We show that blocking copper trafficking induces cellular oxidative stress and reduces levels of cellular ATP. The reduced level of ATP results in activation of the AMP-activated protein kinase that leads to reduced lipogenesis. Both effects contribute to the inhibition of cancer cell proliferation. Our results establish copper chaperones as new targets for future developments in anticancer therapies.

  3. Modeling Interactions in Small Groups (United States)

    Heise, David R.


    A new theory of interaction within small groups posits that group members initiate actions when tension mounts between the affective meanings of their situational identities and impressions produced by recent events. Actors choose partners and behaviors so as to reduce the tensions. A computer model based on this theory, incorporating reciprocal…

  4. A small azide-modified thiazole-based reporter molecule for fluorescence and mass spectrometric detection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie Wolfram


    Full Text Available Molecular probes are widely used tools in chemical biology that allow tracing of bioactive metabolites and selective labeling of proteins and other biomacromolecules. A common structural motif for such probes consists of a reporter that can be attached by copper(I-catalyzed 1,2,3-triazole formation between terminal alkynes and azides to a reactive headgroup. Here we introduce the synthesis and application of the new thiazole-based, azide-tagged reporter 4-(3-azidopropoxy-5-(4-bromophenyl-2-(pyridin-2-ylthiazole for fluorescence, UV and mass spectrometry (MS detection. This small fluorescent reporter bears a bromine functionalization facilitating the automated data mining of electrospray ionization MS runs by monitoring for its characteristic isotope signature. We demonstrate the universal utility of the reporter for the detection of an alkyne-modified small molecule by LC–MS and for the visualization of a model protein by in-gel fluorescence. The novel probe advantageously compares with commercially available azide-modified fluorophores and a brominated one. The ease of synthesis, small size, stability, and the universal detection possibilities make it an ideal reporter for activity-based protein profiling and functional metabolic profiling.

  5. Efficient Isothermal Titration Calorimetry Technique Identifies Direct Interaction of Small Molecule Inhibitors with the Target Protein. (United States)

    Gal, Maayan; Bloch, Itai; Shechter, Nelia; Romanenko, Olga; Shir, Ofer M


    Protein-protein interactions (PPI) play a critical role in regulating many cellular processes. Finding novel PPI inhibitors that interfere with specific binding of two proteins is considered a great challenge, mainly due to the complexity involved in characterizing multi-molecular systems and limited understanding of the physical principles governing PPIs. Here we show that the combination of virtual screening techniques, which are capable of filtering a large library of potential small molecule inhibitors, and a unique secondary screening by isothermal titration calorimetry, a label-free method capable of observing direct interactions, is an efficient tool for finding such an inhibitor. In this study we applied this strategy in a search for a small molecule capable of interfering with the interaction of the tumor-suppressor p53 and the E3-ligase MDM2. We virtually screened a library of 15 million small molecules that were filtered to a final set of 80 virtual hits. Our in vitro experimental assay, designed to validate the activity of mixtures of compounds by isothermal titration calorimetry, was used to identify an active molecule against MDM2. At the end of the process the small molecule (4S,7R)-4-(4-chlorophenyl)-5-hydroxy-2,7-dimethyl-N-(6-methylpyridin-2-yl)-4,6,7,8 tetrahydrIoquinoline-3-carboxamide was found to bind MDM2 with a dissociation constant of ~2 µM. Following the identification of this single bioactive compound, spectroscopic measurements were used to further characterize the interaction of the small molecule with the target protein. 2D NMR spectroscopy was used to map the binding region of the small molecule, and fluorescence polarization measurement confirmed that it indeed competes with p53.

  6. Small molecule activators of SIRT1 replicate signaling pathways triggered by calorie restriction in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lavu Siva


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Calorie restriction (CR produces a number of health benefits and ameliorates diseases of aging such as type 2 diabetes. The components of the pathways downstream of CR may provide intervention points for developing therapeutics for treating diseases of aging. The NAD+-dependent protein deacetylase SIRT1 has been implicated as one of the key downstream regulators of CR in yeast, rodents, and humans. Small molecule activators of SIRT1 have been identified that exhibit efficacy in animal models of diseases typically associated with aging including type 2 diabetes. To identify molecular processes induced in the liver of mice treated with two structurally distinct SIRT1 activators, SIRT501 (formulated resveratrol and SRT1720, for three days, we utilized a systems biology approach and applied Causal Network Modeling (CNM on gene expression data to elucidate downstream effects of SIRT1 activation. Results Here we demonstrate that SIRT1 activators recapitulate many of the molecular events downstream of CR in vivo, such as enhancing mitochondrial biogenesis, improving metabolic signaling pathways, and blunting pro-inflammatory pathways in mice fed a high fat, high calorie diet. Conclusion CNM of gene expression data from mice treated with SRT501 or SRT1720 in combination with supporting in vitro and in vivo data demonstrates that SRT501 and SRT1720 produce a signaling profile that mirrors CR, improves glucose and insulin homeostasis, and acts via SIRT1 activation in vivo. Taken together these results are encouraging regarding the use of small molecule activators of SIRT1 for therapeutic intervention into type 2 diabetes, a strategy which is currently being investigated in multiple clinical trials.

  7. Galectin-3 Inhibition by a Small-Molecule Inhibitor Reduces Both Pathological Corneal Neovascularization and Fibrosis (United States)

    Chen*, Wei-Sheng; Cao, Zhiyi; Leffler, Hakon; Nilsson, Ulf J.; Panjwani, Noorjahan


    Purpose Corneal neovascularization and scarring commonly lead to significant vision loss. This study was designed to determine whether a small-molecule inhibitor of galectin-3 can inhibit both corneal angiogenesis and fibrosis in experimental mouse models. Methods Animal models of silver nitrate cautery and alkaline burn were used to induce mouse corneal angiogenesis and fibrosis, respectively. Corneas were treated with the galectin-3 inhibitor, 33DFTG, or vehicle alone and were processed for whole-mount immunofluorescence staining and Western blot analysis to quantify the density of blood vessels and markers of fibrosis. In addition, human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and primary human corneal fibroblasts were used to analyze the role of galectin-3 in the process of angiogenesis and fibrosis in vitro. Results Robust angiogenesis was observed in silver nitrate–cauterized corneas on day 5 post injury, and markedly increased corneal opacification was demonstrated in alkaline burn–injured corneas on days 7 and 14 post injury. Treatment with the inhibitor substantially reduced corneal angiogenesis and opacification with a concomitant decrease in α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) expression and distribution. In vitro studies revealed that 33DFTG inhibited VEGF-A–induced HUVEC migration and sprouting without cytotoxic effects. The addition of exogenous galectin-3 to corneal fibroblasts in culture induced the expression of fibrosis-related proteins, including α-SMA and connective tissue growth factor. Conclusions Our data provide proof of concept that targeting galectin-3 by the novel, small-molecule inhibitor, 33DFTG, ameliorates pathological corneal angiogenesis as well as fibrosis. These findings suggest a potential new therapeutic strategy for treating ocular disorders related to pathological angiogenesis and fibrosis. PMID:28055102

  8. Predicting metabolic pathways of small molecules and enzymes based on interaction information of chemicals and proteins. (United States)

    Gao, Yu-Fei; Chen, Lei; Cai, Yu-Dong; Feng, Kai-Yan; Huang, Tao; Jiang, Yang


    Metabolic pathway analysis, one of the most important fields in biochemistry, is pivotal to understanding the maintenance and modulation of the functions of an organism. Good comprehension of metabolic pathways is critical to understanding the mechanisms of some fundamental biological processes. Given a small molecule or an enzyme, how may one identify the metabolic pathways in which it may participate? Answering such a question is a first important step in understanding a metabolic pathway system. By utilizing the information provided by chemical-chemical interactions, chemical-protein interactions, and protein-protein interactions, a novel method was proposed by which to allocate small molecules and enzymes to 11 major classes of metabolic pathways. A benchmark dataset consisting of 3,348 small molecules and 654 enzymes of yeast was constructed to test the method. It was observed that the first order prediction accuracy evaluated by the jackknife test was 79.56% in identifying the small molecules and enzymes in a benchmark dataset. Our method may become a useful vehicle in predicting the metabolic pathways of small molecules and enzymes, providing a basis for some further analysis of the pathway systems.

  9. Influence of thermocleavable functionality on organic field-effect transistor performance of small molecules (United States)

    Mahale, Rajashree Y.; Dharmapurikar, Satej S.; Chini, Mrinmoy Kumar; Venugopalan, Vijay


    Diketopyrrolopyrrole based donor-acceptor-donor conjugated small molecules using ethylene dioxythiophene as a donor was synthesized. Electron deficient diketopyrrolopyrrole unit was substituted with thermocleavable (tert-butyl acetate) side chains. The thermal treatment of the molecules at 160 °C eliminated the tert-butyl ester group results in the formation of corresponding acid. Optical and theoretical studies revealed that the molecules adopted a change in molecular arrangement after thermolysis. The conjugated small molecules possessed p-channel charge transport characteristics in organic field effect transistors. The charge carrier mobility was increased after thermolysis of tert-butyl ester group to 5.07 × 10-5 cm2/V s.

  10. Evaluation of efficiency and trapping capacity of restricted access media trap columns for the online trapping of small molecules. (United States)

    Baghdady, Yehia Z; Schug, Kevin A


    Restricted access media are generally composed from multi-modal particles that combine a size excluding outer surface and an inner-pore retention mechanism for small molecules. Such materials can be used for either online isolation and pre-concentration of target small molecules or removal of small molecule interferences from large macromolecules, such as proteins in complex biological matrices. Thus, they are considered as enhanced online solid-phase extraction materials. We evaluated the efficiency and trapping capacity of different semi-permeable surface restricted access media columns (C18 , C8 , and C4 inner pores) for four model small molecule compounds (dopamine hydrochloride, acetaminophen, 4-hydroxybenzoic acid, and diethyl phthalate) having variable physicochemical properties. We further studied the effect of mobile phase flow rate (0.25, 0.5, 1, and 2 mL/min) and pH, using 98:2 0.5% acetic acid in water/ methanol (pH 2.88) and 5 mM ammonium acetate in 98:2 water/methanol (pH 6.61) as mobile phases. Breakthrough curves generated using frontal analysis were analyzed to determine important chromatographic parameters specific for each of the studied compounds. Experimental determination of these parameters allowed selection of the most efficient trap column and the best loading mobile phase conditions for maximal solute enrichment and pre-concentration on restricted access media trap columns.

  11. Stimulation of Host Immune Defenses by a Small Molecule Protects C. elegans from Bacterial Infection


    Read Pukkila-Worley; Rhonda Feinbaum; Kirienko, Natalia V; Jonah Larkins-Ford; Conery, Annie L.; Ausubel, Frederick M.


    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans offers currently untapped potential for carrying out high-throughput, live-animal screens of low molecular weight compound libraries to identify molecules that target a variety of cellular processes. We previously used a bacterial infection assay in C. elegans to identify 119 compounds that affect host-microbe interactions among 37,214 tested. Here we show that one of these small molecules, RPW-24, protects C. elegans from bacterial infection by stimulating...

  12. SwissDock, a protein-small molecule docking web service based on EADock DSS. (United States)

    Grosdidier, Aurélien; Zoete, Vincent; Michielin, Olivier


    Most life science processes involve, at the atomic scale, recognition between two molecules. The prediction of such interactions at the molecular level, by so-called docking software, is a non-trivial task. Docking programs have a wide range of applications ranging from protein engineering to drug design. This article presents SwissDock, a web server dedicated to the docking of small molecules on target proteins. It is based on the EADock DSS engine, combined with setup scripts for curating common problems and for preparing both the target protein and the ligand input files. An efficient Ajax/HTML interface was designed and implemented so that scientists can easily submit dockings and retrieve the predicted complexes. For automated docking tasks, a programmatic SOAP interface has been set up and template programs can be downloaded in Perl, Python and PHP. The web site also provides an access to a database of manually curated complexes, based on the Ligand Protein Database. A wiki and a forum are available to the community to promote interactions between users. The SwissDock web site is available online at We believe it constitutes a step toward generalizing the use of docking tools beyond the traditional molecular modeling community.

  13. Two small molecule lead compounds as new antifungal agents effective against Candida albicans and Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yones Pilehvar-Soltanahmadi


    Full Text Available  Background: Antifungal drug resistance and few numbers of available drugs limit therapeutic options against fungal infections. The present study was designed to discover new antifungal drugs. Materials and Methods: This study was carried out in two separate steps, that is, in silico lead identification and in vitro assaying of antifungal potential. A structural data file of a ternary complex of fusicuccin (legend, C terminus of H+-ATPase and 14-3-3 regulatory protein (1o9F.pdb file was used as a model. Computational screening of a virtual 3D database of drug-like molecules was performed and selected small molecules, resembling the functional part of the ligand performing ligand docking, were tested using ArgusLab (4.0.1. Two lead compounds, 3-Cyclohexan propionic acid (CXP and 4-phenyl butyric acid (PBA were selected according to their ligation scores. Standard Strains of Candida albicans and Saccharomyces cerevisiae were used to measure the antifungal potential of the two identified lead compounds against the fungi using micro-well plate dilution assay. Results: Ligation scores for CXP and PBA were -9.33744 and -10.7259 kcal/mol, respectively, and MIC and MFC of CXP and PBA against the two yeasts were promising. Conclusion: The evidence from the present study suggests that CXP and PBA possess potentially antifungals properties. 

  14. Understanding Small-Molecule Interactions in Metal-Organic Frameworks: Coupling Experiment with Theory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Jason S. [The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of California, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Vlaisavljevich, Bess [Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of California, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Britt, David K. [The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Brown, Craig M. [National Institute of Standards and Technology, Center for Neutron Research, Gaithersburg MD 20899 USA; Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Delaware, Newark DE 19716 USA; Haranczyk, Maciej [Computational Research Division Lawrence, Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Neaton, Jeffrey B. [The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Department of Physics, University of California, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Smit, Berend [Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of California, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Department Institut des Sciences et Ingénierie Chimiques, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), 1015 CH Lausanne Switzerland; Long, Jeffrey R. [Department of Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Division of Materials Sciences, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Queen, Wendy L. [The Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley CA 94720 USA; Department Institut des Sciences et Ingénierie Chimiques, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), 1015 CH Lausanne Switzerland


    Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) have gained much attention as next-generation porous media for various applications, especially gas separation/storage, and catalysis. New MOFs are regularly reported; however, to develop better materials in a timely manner for specific applications, the interactions between guest molecules and the internal surface of the framework must first be understood. A combined experimental and theoretical approach is presented, which proves essential for the elucidation of small-molecule interactions in a model MOF system known as M2(dobdc) (dobdc4- = 2,5-dioxido-1,4-benzenedicarboxylate; M = Mg, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, or Zn), a material whose adsorption properties can be readily tuned via chemical substitution. It is additionally shown that the study of extensive families like this one can provide a platform to test the efficacy and accuracy of developing computational methodologies in slightly varying chemical environments, a task that is necessary for their evolution into viable, robust tools for screening large numbers of materials.

  15. Structural Effects of Small Molecules on Phospholipid Bilayers Investigated by Molecular Simulations

    CERN Document Server

    Lee, B W; Sum, A K; Vattulainen, I; Patra, M; Karttunen, M; Lee, Bryan W; Faller, Roland; Sum, Amadeu K; Vattulainen, Ilpo; Patra, Michael; Karttunen, Mikko


    We summarize and compare recent Molecular Dynamics simulations on the interactions of dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) bilayers in the liquid crystalline phase with a number of small molecules including trehalose, a disaccharide of glucose, alcohols, and dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO). The sugar molecules tend to stabilize the structure of the bilayer as they bridge adjacent lipid headgroups. They do not strongly change the structure of the bilayer. Alcohols and DMSO destabilize the bilayer as they increase its area per molecule in the bilayer plane and decrease the order parameter. Alcohols have a stronger detrimental effect than DMSO. The observables which we compare are the area per molecule in the plane of the bilayer, the membrane thickness, and the NMR order parameter of DPPC hydrocarbon tails. The area per molecule and the order parameter are very well correlated whereas the bilayer thickness is not necessarily correlated with them.

  16. Synthetic Small Molecule Inhibitors of Hh Signaling As Anti-Cancer Chemotherapeutics (United States)

    Maschinot, C.A.; Pace, J.R.; Hadden, M.K.


    The hedgehog (Hh) pathway is a developmental signaling pathway that is essential to the proper embryonic development of many vertebrate systems. Dysregulation of Hh signaling has been implicated as a causative factor in the development and progression of several forms of human cancer. As such, the development of small molecule inhibitors of Hh signaling as potential anti-cancer chemotherapeutics has been a major area of research interest in both academics and industry over the past ten years. Through these efforts, synthetic small molecules that target multiple components of the Hh pathway have been identified and advanced to preclinical or clinical development. The goal of this review is to provide an update on the current status of several synthetic small molecule Hh pathway inhibitors and explore the potential of several recently disclosed inhibitory scaffolds. PMID:26310919

  17. Precise small-molecule recognition of a toxic CUG RNA repeat expansion. (United States)

    Rzuczek, Suzanne G; Colgan, Lesley A; Nakai, Yoshio; Cameron, Michael D; Furling, Denis; Yasuda, Ryohei; Disney, Matthew D


    Excluding the ribosome and riboswitches, developing small molecules that selectively target RNA is a longstanding problem in chemical biology. A typical cellular RNA is difficult to target because it has little tertiary, but abundant secondary structure. We designed allele-selective compounds that target such an RNA, the toxic noncoding repeat expansion (r(CUG)(exp)) that causes myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1). We developed several strategies to generate allele-selective small molecules, including non-covalent binding, covalent binding, cleavage and on-site probe synthesis. Covalent binding and cleavage enabled target profiling in cells derived from individuals with DM1, showing precise recognition of r(CUG)(exp). In the on-site probe synthesis approach, small molecules bound adjacent sites in r(CUG)(exp) and reacted to afford picomolar inhibitors via a proximity-based click reaction only in DM1-affected cells. We expanded this approach to image r(CUG)(exp) in its natural context.

  18. Systems-based Discovery of Tomatidine as a Natural Small Molecule Inhibitor of Skeletal Muscle Atrophy* (United States)

    Dyle, Michael C.; Ebert, Scott M.; Cook, Daniel P.; Kunkel, Steven D.; Fox, Daniel K.; Bongers, Kale S.; Bullard, Steven A.; Dierdorff, Jason M.; Adams, Christopher M.


    Skeletal muscle atrophy is a common and debilitating condition that lacks an effective therapy. To address this problem, we used a systems-based discovery strategy to search for a small molecule whose mRNA expression signature negatively correlates to mRNA expression signatures of human skeletal muscle atrophy. This strategy identified a natural small molecule from tomato plants, tomatidine. Using cultured skeletal myotubes from both humans and mice, we found that tomatidine stimulated mTORC1 signaling and anabolism, leading to accumulation of protein and mitochondria, and ultimately, cell growth. Furthermore, in mice, tomatidine increased skeletal muscle mTORC1 signaling, reduced skeletal muscle atrophy, enhanced recovery from skeletal muscle atrophy, stimulated skeletal muscle hypertrophy, and increased strength and exercise capacity. Collectively, these results identify tomatidine as a novel small molecule inhibitor of muscle atrophy. Tomatidine may have utility as a therapeutic agent or lead compound for skeletal muscle atrophy. PMID:24719321

  19. Direct Generation of Human Neuronal Cells from Adult Astrocytes by Small Molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Longfei Gao


    Full Text Available Astrocytes, due to the proximity to neuronal lineage and capability to proliferate, are ideal starting cells to regenerate neurons. Human fetal astrocytes have been successfully converted into neuronal cells by small molecules, which offered a broader range of further applications than transcription factor-mediated neuronal reprogramming. Here we report that human adult astrocytes could also be converted into neuronal cells by a different set of small molecules. These induced cells exhibited typical neuronal morphologies, expressed neuronal markers, and displayed neuronal electrophysiological properties. Genome-wide RNA-sequencing analysis showed that the global gene expression profile of induced neuronal cells resembled that of human embryonic stem cell-differentiated neurons. When transplanted into post-natal mouse brains, these induced neuronal cells could survive and become electrophysiologically mature. Altogether, our study provides a strategy to directly generate transgene-free neuronal cells from human adult astrocytes by small molecules.

  20. Rethinking Mass Spectrometry-Based Small Molecule Identification Strategies in Metabolomics. (United States)

    Matsuda, Fumio


    The CASMI 2013 (Critical Assessment of Small Molecule Identification 2013, contest was held to systematically evaluate strategies used for mass spectrometry-based identification of small molecules. The results of the contest highlight that, because of the extensive efforts made towards the construction of databases and search tools, database-assisted small molecule identification can now automatically annotate some metabolite signals found in the metabolome data. In this commentary, the current state of metabolite annotation is compared with that of transcriptomics and proteomics. The comparison suggested that certain limitations in the metabolite annotation process need to be addressed, such as (i) the completeness of the database, (ii) the conversion between raw data and structure, (iii) the one-to-one correspondence between measured data and correct search results, and (iv) the false discovery rate in database search results.

  1. Nonclinical Evaluations of Small-Molecule Oncology Drugs: Integration into Clinical Dose Optimization and Toxicity Management. (United States)

    Dambach, Donna M; Simpson, Natalie E; Jones, Thomas W; Brennan, Richard J; Pazdur, Richard; Palmby, Todd R


    Multidisciplinary approaches that incorporate nonclinical pharmacologic and toxicologic characterization of small-molecule oncology drugs into clinical development programs may facilitate improved benefit-risk profiles and clinical toxicity management in patients. The performance of the current nonclinical safety-testing scheme was discussed, highlighting current strengths and areas for improvement. While current nonclinical testing appears to predict the clinical outcome where the prevalence of specific adverse effects are high, nonclinical testing becomes less reliable for predicting clinical adverse effects that occur infrequently, as with some kinase inhibitors. Although adverse effects associated with kinase inhibitors can often be predicted on the basis of target biology, drugs can be promiscuous and inhibit targets with poorly defined function and associated risks. Improvements in adverse effect databases and better characterization of the biologic activities of drug targets may enable better use of computational modeling approaches in predicting adverse effects with kinase inhibitors. Assessing safety of a lead candidate in parallel with other drug properties enables incorporation of a molecule's best features during chemical design, eliminates the worst molecules early, and permits timely investigation/characterization of toxicity mechanisms for identified liabilities. A safety lead optimization and candidate identification strategy that reduces intrinsic toxicity and metabolic risk and enhances selectivity can deliver selective kinase inhibitors that demonstrate on-target adverse effects identified nonclinically. Integrating clinical and nonclinical data during drug development can facilitate better identification and management of oncology drugs. Follow-up nonclinical studies may be used to better understand the risks in a given patient population and minimize or manage these risks more appropriately. Clin Cancer Res; 22(11); 2618-22. ©2016 AACR SEE ALL

  2. The use of calorimetry in the biophysical characterization of small molecule alkaloids binding to RNA structures. (United States)

    Kumar, Gopinatha Suresh; Basu, Anirban


    RNA has now emerged as a potential target for therapeutic intervention. RNA targeted drug design requires detailed thermodynamic characterization that provides new insights into the interactions and this together with structural data, may be used in rational drug design. The use of calorimetry to characterize small molecule-RNA interactions has emerged as a reliable and sensitive tool after the recent advancements in biocalorimetry. This review summarizes the recent advancements in thermodynamic characterization of small molecules, particularly some natural alkaloids binding to various RNA structures. Thermodynamic characterization provides information that can supplement structural data leading to more effective drug development protocols. This review provides a concise report on the use of isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) techniques in characterizing small molecules, mostly alkaloids-RNA interactions with particular reference to binding of tRNA, single stranded RNA, double stranded RNA, poly(A), triplex RNA. It is now apparent that a combination of structural and thermodynamic data is essential for rational design of specific RNA targeted drugs. Recent advancements in biocalorimetry instrumentation have led to detailed understanding of the thermodynamics of small molecules binding to various RNA structures paving the path for the development of many new natural and synthetic molecules as specific binders to various RNA structures. RNA targeted drug design, that remained unexplored, will immensely benefit from the calorimetric studies leading to the development of effective drugs for many diseases. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Discovery of Small Molecules that Inhibit the Disordered Protein, p27Kip1 (United States)

    Iconaru, Luigi I.; Ban, David; Bharatham, Kavitha; Ramanathan, Arvind; Zhang, Weixing; Shelat, Anang A.; Zuo, Jian; Kriwacki, Richard W.


    Disordered proteins are highly prevalent in biological systems, they control myriad signaling and regulatory processes, and their levels and/or cellular localization are often altered in human disease. In contrast to folded proteins, disordered proteins, due to conformational heterogeneity and dynamics, are not considered viable drug targets. We challenged this paradigm by identifying through NMR-based screening small molecules that bound specifically, albeit weakly, to the disordered cell cycle regulator, p27Kip1 (p27). Two groups of molecules bound to sites created by transient clusters of aromatic residues within p27. Conserved chemical features within these two groups of small molecules exhibited complementarity to their binding sites within p27, establishing structure-activity relationships for small molecule:disordered protein interactions. Finally, one compound counteracted the Cdk2/cyclin A inhibitory function of p27 in vitro, providing proof-of-principle that small molecules can inhibit the function of a disordered protein (p27) through sequestration in a conformation incapable of folding and binding to a natural regulatory target (Cdk2/cyclin A). PMID:26507530

  4. Concentration-related response potentiometric titrations to study the interaction of small molecules with large biomolecules. (United States)

    Hamidi-Asl, Ezat; Daems, Devin; De Wael, Karolien; Van Camp, Guy; Nagels, Luc J


    In the present paper, the utility of a special potentiometric titration approach for recognition and calculation of biomolecule/small-molecule interactions is reported. This approach is fast, sensitive, reproducible, and inexpensive in comparison to the other methods for the determination of the association constant values (Ka) and the interaction energies (ΔG). The potentiometric titration measurement is based on the use of a classical polymeric membrane indicator electrode in a solution of the small-molecule ligand. The biomolecule is used as a titrant. The potential is measured versus a reference electrode and transformed into a concentration-related signal over the entire concentration interval, also at low concentrations, where the millivolt (y-axis) versus log canalyte (x-axis) potentiometric calibration curve is not linear. In the procedure, Ka is calculated for the interaction of cocaine with a cocaine binding aptamer and with an anticocaine antibody. To study the selectivity and cross-reactivity, other oligonucleotides and aptamers are tested, as well as other small ligand molecules such as tetrakis(4-chlorophenyl)borate, metergoline, lidocaine, and bromhexine. The calculated Ka compared favorably to the value reported in the literature using surface plasmon resonance. The potentiometric titration approach called "concentration-related response potentiometry" is used to study molecular interaction for seven macromolecular target molecules and four small-molecule ligands.

  5. Composite microsphere-functionalized scaffold for the controlled release of small molecules in tissue engineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Pandolfi


    Full Text Available Current tissue engineering strategies focus on restoring damaged tissue architectures using biologically active scaffolds. The ideal scaffold would mimic the extracellular matrix of any tissue of interest, promoting cell proliferation and de novo extracellular matrix deposition. A plethora of techniques have been evaluated to engineer scaffolds for the controlled and targeted release of bioactive molecules to provide a functional structure for tissue growth and remodeling, as well as enhance recruitment and proliferation of autologous cells within the implant. Recently, novel approaches using small molecules, instead of growth factors, have been exploited to regulate tissue regeneration. The use of small synthetic molecules could be very advantageous because of their stability, tunability, and low cost. Herein, we propose a chitosan–gelatin scaffold functionalized with composite microspheres consisting of mesoporous silicon microparticles and poly(dl-lactic-co-glycolic acid for the controlled release of sphingosine-1-phospate, a small molecule of interest. We characterized the platform with scanning electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and confocal microscopy. Finally, the biocompatibility of this multiscale system was analyzed by culturing human mesenchymal stem cells onto the scaffold. The presented strategy establishes the basis of a versatile scaffold for the controlled release of small molecules and for culturing mesenchymal stem cells for regenerative medicine applications.

  6. Organic Semiconductor-Containing Supramolecules: Effect of Small Molecule Crystallization and Molecular Packing

    KAUST Repository

    Rancatore, Benjamin J.


    © 2016 American Chemical Society. Small molecules (SMs) with unique optical or electronic properties provide an opportunity to incorporate functionality into block copolymer (BCP)-based supramolecules. However, the assembly of supramolecules based on these highly crystalline molecules differs from their less crystalline counterparts. Here, two families of organic semiconductor SMs are investigated, where the composition of the crystalline core, the location (side- vs end-functionalization) of the alkyl solubilizing groups, and the constitution (branched vs linear) of the alkyl groups are varied. With these SMs, we present a systematic study of how the phase behavior of the SMs affects the overall assembly of these organic semiconductor-based supramolecules. The incorporation of SMs has a large effect on the interfacial curvature, the supramolecular periodicity, and the overall supramolecular morphology. The crystal packing of the SM within the supramolecule does not necessarily lead to the assembly of the comb block within the BCP microdomains, as is normally observed for alkyl-containing supramolecules. An unusual lamellar morphology with a wavy interface between the microdomains is observed due to changes in the packing structure of the small molecule within BCP microdomains. Since the supramolecular approach is modular and small molecules can be readily switched out, present studies provide useful guidance toward access supramolecular assemblies over several length scales using optically active and semiconducting small molecules.

  7. Small-molecule CFTR activators increase tear secretion and prevent experimental dry eye disease. (United States)

    Flores, Alyssa M; Casey, Scott D; Felix, Christian M; Phuan, Puay W; Verkman, A S; Levin, Marc H


    Dry eye disorders, including Sjögren's syndrome, constitute a common problem in the aging population, with limited effective therapeutic options available. The cAMP-activated Cl(-) channel cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) is a major prosecretory channel at the ocular surface. We investigated whether compounds that target CFTR can correct the abnormal tear film in dry eye. Small-molecule activators of human wild-type CFTR identified by high-throughput screening were evaluated in cell culture and in vivo assays, to select compounds that stimulate Cl(-)-driven fluid secretion across the ocular surface in mice. An aminophenyl-1,3,5-triazine, CFTRact-K089, fully activated CFTR in cell cultures with EC50 ∼250 nM and produced an ∼8.5 mV hyperpolarization in ocular surface potential difference. When delivered topically, CFTRact-K089 doubled basal tear volume for 4 h and had no effect in CF mice. CFTRact-K089 showed sustained tear film bioavailability without detectable systemic absorption. In a mouse model of aqueous-deficient dry eye produced by lacrimal ablation, topical administration of 0.1 nmol CFTRact-K089 3 times daily restored tear volume to basal levels, preventing corneal epithelial disruption when initiated at the time of surgery and reversing it when started after development of dry eye. Our results support the potential utility of CFTR-targeted activators as a novel prosecretory treatment for dry eye.-Flores, A. M., Casey, S. D., Felix, C. M., Phuan, P. W., Verkman, A. S., Levin, M. H. Small-molecule CFTR activators increase tear secretion and prevent experimental dry eye disease.

  8. Therapeutic Efficacy of the Small Molecule GS-5734 against Ebola Virus in Rhesus Monkeys (United States)

    Warren, Travis K.; Jordan, Robert; Lo, Michael K.; Ray, Adrian S.; Mackman, Richard L.; Soloveva, Veronica; Siegel, Dustin; Perron, Michel; Bannister, Roy; Hui, Hon C.; Larson, Nate; Strickley, Robert; Wells, Jay; Stuthman, Kelly S.; Van Tongeren, Sean A.; Garza, Nicole L.; Donnelly, Ginger; Shurtleff, Amy C.; Retterer, Cary J.; Gharaibeh, Dima; Zamani, Rouzbeh; Kenny, Tara; Eaton, Brett P.; Grimes, Elizabeth; Welch, Lisa S.; Gomba, Laura; Wilhelmsen, Catherine L.; Nichols, Donald K.; Nuss, Jonathan E.; Nagle, Elyse R.; Kugelman, Jeffrey R.; Palacios, Gustavo; Doerffler, Edward; Neville, Sean; Carra, Ernest; Clarke, Michael O.; Zhang, Lijun; Lew, Willard; Ross, Bruce; Wang, Queenie; Chun, Kwon; Wolfe, Lydia; Babusis, Darius; Park, Yeojin; Stray, Kirsten M.; Trancheva, Iva; Feng, Joy Y.; Baraskaus, Ona; Xu, Yili; Wong, Pamela; Braun, Molly R.; Flint, Mike; McMullan, Laura K.; Chen, Shan-Shan; Fearns, Rachel; Swaminathan, Swami; Mayers, Douglas L.; Spiropoulou, Christina F.; Lee, William A.; Nichol, Stuart T.; Cihlar, Tomas; Bavari, Sina


    Summary The most recent Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa – unprecedented in the number of cases and fatalities, geographic distribution, and number of nations affected – highlights the need for safe, effective, and readily available antiviral agents for treatment and prevention of acute Ebola virus (EBOV) disease (EVD) or sequelae1. No antiviral therapeutics have yet received regulatory approval or demonstrated clinical efficacy. Here we describe the discovery of a novel anti-EBOV small molecule antiviral, GS-5734, a monophosphoramidate prodrug of an adenosine analog. GS-5734 exhibits antiviral activity against multiple variants of EBOV in cell-based assays. The pharmacologically active nucleoside triphosphate (NTP) is efficiently formed in multiple human cell types incubated with GS-5734 in vitro, and the NTP acts as an alternate substrate and RNA-chain terminator in primer-extension assays utilizing a surrogate respiratory syncytial virus RNA polymerase. Intravenous administration of GS-5734 to nonhuman primates resulted in persistent NTP levels in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (half-life = 14 h) and distribution to sanctuary sites for viral replication including testes, eye, and brain. In a rhesus monkey model of EVD, once daily intravenous administration of 10 mg/kg GS-5734 for 12 days resulted in profound suppression of EBOV replication and protected 100% of EBOV-infected animals against lethal disease, ameliorating clinical disease signs and pathophysiological markers, even when treatments were initiated three days after virus exposure when systemic viral RNA was detected in two of six treated animals. These results provide the first substantive, post-exposure protection by a small-molecule antiviral compound against EBOV in nonhuman primates. The broad-spectrum antiviral activity of GS-5734 in vitro against other pathogenic RNA viruses – including filoviruses, arenaviruses, and coronaviruses – suggests the potential for expanded indications

  9. Rationally designed small molecules targeting the RNA that causes myotonic dystrophy type 1 are potently bioactive. (United States)

    Childs-Disney, Jessica L; Hoskins, Jason; Rzuczek, Suzanne G; Thornton, Charles A; Disney, Matthew D


    RNA is an important drug target, but it is difficult to design or discover small molecules that modulate RNA function. In the present study, we report that rationally designed, modularly assembled small molecules that bind the RNA that causes myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) are potently bioactive in cell culture models. DM1 is caused when an expansion of r(CUG) repeats, or r(CUG)(exp), is present in the 3' untranslated region (UTR) of the dystrophia myotonica protein kinase (DMPK) mRNA. r(CUG)(exp) folds into a hairpin with regularly repeating 5'CUG/3'GUC motifs and sequesters muscleblind-like 1 protein (MBNL1). A variety of defects are associated with DM1, including (i) formation of nuclear foci, (ii) decreased translation of DMPK mRNA due to its nuclear retention, and (iii) pre-mRNA splicing defects due to inactivation of MBNL1, which controls the alternative splicing of various pre-mRNAs. Previously, modularly assembled ligands targeting r(CUG)(exp) were designed using information in an RNA motif-ligand database. These studies showed that a bis-benzimidazole (H) binds the 5'CUG/3'GUC motif in r(CUG)(exp.) Therefore, we designed multivalent ligands to bind simultaneously multiple copies of this motif in r(CUG)(exp). Herein, we report that the designed compounds improve DM1-associated defects including improvement of translational and pre-mRNA splicing defects and the disruption of nuclear foci. These studies may establish a foundation to exploit other RNA targets in genomic sequence.

  10. Photophysical properties of novel small acceptor molecules and their application in hybrid small-molecular/polymeric organic solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Inal, Sahika; Castellani, Mauro; Neher, Dieter [Universitaet Potsdam, Institut fuer Physik und Astronomie, Potsdam-Golm (Germany); Sellinger, Alan [Institute of Materials Research and Engineering, Singapore (Singapore)


    Recent experimental investigations revealed that the photovoltaic properties of our devices are related to the balance between recombination and field-induced dissociation of interfacial excited states such as exciplexes or geminate polaron pairs. This balance was shown to be affected by the nanomorphology at the heterojunction. We have analyzed the photophysical properties of a new materials couple comprising an electron-donating PPV copolymer and a vinazene-based small molecule acceptor. Steady state and time-resolved photoluminescence (PL) spectroscopy in solution and in the solid state showed the formation of excimers within the acceptor. The associated long-range diffusion promise efficient energy harvesting at the heterojunction. On the other hand, blends of the PPV-derivative and the small molecule revealed strong exciplex formation. Therefore, bilayered hybrid small-molecular/polymeric solar cells have been fabricated by consequently spin-coating the macromolecular donor and the small molecule acceptor from two different solvents. The bilayer architecture limits recombination processes enabling high FFs of around 44% and a technologically important open circuit voltage of 1Volt.

  11. Small-molecule library screening by docking with PyRx. (United States)

    Dallakyan, Sargis; Olson, Arthur J


    Virtual molecular screening is used to dock small-molecule libraries to a macromolecule in order to find lead compounds with desired biological function. This in silico method is well known for its application in computer-aided drug design. This chapter describes how to perform small-molecule virtual screening by docking with PyRx, which is open-source software with an intuitive user interface that runs on all major operating systems (Linux, Windows, and Mac OS). Specific steps for using PyRx, as well as considerations for data preparation, docking, and data analysis, are also described.

  12. Small-molecule control of cytokine function: new opportunities for treating immune disorders (United States)

    Sundberg, Thomas B.; Xavier, Ramnik J.; Schreiber, Stuart L.; Shamji, Alykhan F.


    Manipulating cytokine function with protein-based drugs has proven effective for treating a wide variety of autoimmune and auto-inflammatory disorders. However, the limited ability of protein-based drugs to modulate intracellular targets, including many implicated by studies of the genetics and physiology of these diseases, and to coordinately neutralize redundant inflammatory cytokines, suggest an important and complementary role for small molecules in immunomodulatory drug development. The recent clinical approval of Janus kinase and phosphodiesterase inhibitors, along with emerging evidence from other compound classes, firmly establish small molecules as effective tools for modulating therapeutically relevant proteins that give rise to aberrant cytokine signaling or mediate its downstream consequences. PMID:25222143

  13. 'Reactive' nano-complex coated medical cotton: a facile avenue for tailored release of small molecules. (United States)

    Rather, Adil Majeed; Mahato, Sulendar; Maji, Kousik; Gogoi, Neeha; Manna, Uttam


    Controlled and sustained release of drug-like small molecules in an aqueous medium still remains a challenging problem due to rapid infiltration of liquid water in most reported drug release systems. However, internal-superhydrophobicity with an antifouling property extending beyond the surface of a material recently has been recognized as a potential avenue for sustained and extended release of drug-like small molecules. Sluggish removal of metastable trapped air in a superhyrophobic material provides a basis to achieve extended release of encapsulated small molecules. In this article, naturally abundant medical-cotton-extensively used in wound management including control of bleeding, absorbance of secretions and protecting wounds from contamination-is strategically exploited in tailoring (from rapid to extended) the release of small molecules by appropriate modulation of liquid water wettability. Modulation included bio-mimicked adhesive and non-adhesive superhydrophobicity of the medical cotton without erosion of any polymeric material. In this process, amine 'reactive' nano-complexes (RNC) were prepared by just mixing branched poly(ethylenimine) (BPEI) with dipentaerythritol pentaacrylate (5Acl) in ethanol with appropriate compositions. Then they were covalently immobilized on fibrous medical-cotton through a facile and robust 1,4-conjugated addition reaction. Residual acrylate moieties in the immobilized RNC provide an opportunity to tailor water wettability through strategic and appropriate post-chemical modification of RNC-coated medical cotton with a primary amine containing various small molecules. This medical-cotton with tunable wettability was exploited further to control the release rate of small molecules from rapid (100 days) times. A volatile solvent induced transient and reversible switching of anti-fouling properties which allowed further varying the amount of post-loading small molecules into the medical cotton up to 2.36 wt% without

  14. Structural insight into inactivation of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 by a small-molecule antagonist

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lin, Zhonghui; Jensen, Jan Kristian; Hong, Zebin


    and cancer. Several types of PAI-1 antagonist have been developed, but the structural basis for their action has remained largely unknown. Here we report X-ray crystal structure analysis of PAI-1 in complex with a small-molecule antagonist, embelin. We propose a mechanism for embelin-induced rapid conversion...... of PAI-1 into a substrate for its target proteases and the subsequent slow conversion of PAI-1 into an irreversibly inactivated form. Our work provides structural clues to an understanding of PAI-1 inactivation by small-molecule antagonists and an important step toward the design of drugs targeting PAI-1....


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chi-fei Wu


    A novel transition appeared above the glass transition temperature of chlorinated polyethylene (CPE) for binary blends of CPE and additives such as organic small molecules or oligomers. This transition was assigned to the dissociation of intermolecular hydrogen bonds between the polymer and additive within the additive rich phase. Of particular interest is that a novel pyramid crystal was observed in the annealed CPE/hindered phenol blends. Another intriguing observation is that these polymer/small molecule blends organized by intermolecular hydrogen bonding have several potential properties, such as shape-memorization, self-restoration, self-adhesiveness and super damping.``

  16. Design, synthesis and selection of DNA-encoded small-molecule libraries. (United States)

    Clark, Matthew A; Acharya, Raksha A; Arico-Muendel, Christopher C; Belyanskaya, Svetlana L; Benjamin, Dennis R; Carlson, Neil R; Centrella, Paolo A; Chiu, Cynthia H; Creaser, Steffen P; Cuozzo, John W; Davie, Christopher P; Ding, Yun; Franklin, G Joseph; Franzen, Kurt D; Gefter, Malcolm L; Hale, Steven P; Hansen, Nils J V; Israel, David I; Jiang, Jinwei; Kavarana, Malcolm J; Kelley, Michael S; Kollmann, Christopher S; Li, Fan; Lind, Kenneth; Mataruse, Sibongile; Medeiros, Patricia F; Messer, Jeffrey A; Myers, Paul; O'Keefe, Heather; Oliff, Matthew C; Rise, Cecil E; Satz, Alexander L; Skinner, Steven R; Svendsen, Jennifer L; Tang, Lujia; van Vloten, Kurt; Wagner, Richard W; Yao, Gang; Zhao, Baoguang; Morgan, Barry A


    Biochemical combinatorial techniques such as phage display, RNA display and oligonucleotide aptamers have proven to be reliable methods for generation of ligands to protein targets. Adapting these techniques to small synthetic molecules has been a long-sought goal. We report the synthesis and interrogation of an 800-million-member DNA-encoded library in which small molecules are covalently attached to an encoding oligonucleotide. The library was assembled by a combination of chemical and enzymatic synthesis, and interrogated by affinity selection. We describe methods for the selection and deconvolution of the chemical display library, and the discovery of inhibitors for two enzymes: Aurora A kinase and p38 MAP kinase.

  17. Dynamic Variation in Protein-Small Molecule Interaction Observed by Double-Nanohole Optical Trapping

    CERN Document Server

    Balushi, Ahmed Al


    The interaction of proteins with small molecules is fundamental to their function in living organisms and it is widely studied in drug development. Here we compare optical trapping dynamics of streptavidin and biotinylated streptavidin using a double nanohole optical trap in a metal film. Consistent and clearly distinct behavior is seen between the protein with and without the small molecule binding. The real-time dynamics at the single protein level are accessible with this technique, which also has advantages of not requiring tethering to a surface or the need for exogeneous markers.

  18. New blue emissive conjugated small molecules with low lying HOMO energy levels for optoelectronic applications (United States)

    Trupthi Devaiah, C.; Hemavathi, B.; Ahipa, T. N.


    Versatile conjugated small molecules bearing cyanopyridone core (CP1-5), composed of various donor/acceptor moieties at position - 4 and - 6 have been designed, developed and characterized. Their solvatochromic studies were conducted and analyzed using Lippert-Mataga, Kamlet-Taft and Catalan solvent scales and interesting results were obtained. The polarizability/dipolarity of the solvent greatly influenced the spectra. The electrochemical studies were carried out using cyclic voltammetry to calculate the HOMO-LUMO energy levels. The study revealed that the synthesized conjugated small molecules possess low lying HOMO energy levels which can be exploited for application in various fields of optoelectronics.

  19. Rational Design of Diketopyrrolopyrrole-Based Small Molecules as Donating Materials for Organic Solar Cells (United States)

    Jin, Ruifa; Wang, Kai


    A series of diketopyrrolopyrrole-based small molecules have been designed to explore their optical, electronic, and charge transport properties as organic solar cell (OSCs) materials. The calculation results showed that the designed molecules can lower the band gap and extend the absorption spectrum towards longer wavelengths. The designed molecules own the large longest wavelength of absorption spectra, the oscillator strength, and absorption region values. The optical, electronic, and charge transport properties of the designed molecules are affected by the introduction of different π-bridges and end groups. We have also predicted the mobility of the designed molecule with the lowest total energies. Our results reveal that the designed molecules are expected to be promising candidates for OSC materials. Additionally, the designed molecules are expected to be promising candidates for electron and/or hole transport materials. On the basis of our results, we suggest that molecules under investigation are suitable donors for [6,6]-phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) and its derivatives as acceptors of OSCs. PMID:26343640

  20. Process Intensification Tools in the Small‐Scale Pharmaceutical Manufacturing of Small Molecules

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mitic, Aleksandar; Gernaey, Krist V.


    of processes are in a state of change. However, it is important to note that not all processes can be intensified easily, such as slow chemical reactions, processes with solids, slurries, and on the like. This review summarizes applications of promising tools for achieving process intensification in the small......‐scale pharmaceutical manufacturing of so‐called small molecules. The focus is on microwave radiation, microreactors, ultrasounds, and meso‐scale tubular reactors....

  1. A density functional study on the adsorption of hydrogen molecule onto small copper clusters

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Xiang-Jun Kuang; Xin-Qiang Wang; Gao-Bin Liu


    An all-electron scalar relativistic calculation on the adsorption of hydrogen molecule onto small copper clusters has been performed by using density functional theory with the generalized gradient approximation (GGA) at PW91 level. Our results reveal that after adsorption of H2 molecule, the Cu-Cu interaction is strengthened and the H-H interaction is weakened, the reactivity enhancement of H2 molecule is obvious. The VIPs, HLGs and VEAs of CuH2 clusters show an obvious odd-even oscillation. It is suggested that the H2 molecule is more favourable to be adsorbed by the even-numbered small copper clusters. Meanwhile, the odd-even alteration of magnetic moments is also observed and may be served as the material with tunable code capacity of `0’ and `1' by adsorbing hydrogen molecule onto odd or even-numbered small copper clusters. Some discrepancies of dissociative adsorption between our work and previous works are found and may be understood in terms of the electron pairing effect and the scalar relativistic effect.

  2. Modulation of heat shock transcription factor 1 as a therapeutic target for small molecule intervention in neurodegenerative disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel W Neef


    Full Text Available Neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington disease are devastating disorders with no therapeutic approaches to ameliorate the underlying protein misfolding defect inherent to poly-glutamine (polyQ proteins. Given the mounting evidence that elevated levels of protein chaperones suppress polyQ protein misfolding, the master regulator of protein chaperone gene transcription, HSF1, is an attractive target for small molecule intervention. We describe a humanized yeast-based high-throughput screen to identify small molecule activators of human HSF1. This screen is insensitive to previously characterized activators of the heat shock response that have undesirable proteotoxic activity or that inhibit Hsp90, the central chaperone for cellular signaling and proliferation. A molecule identified in this screen, HSF1A, is structurally distinct from other characterized small molecule human HSF1 activators, activates HSF1 in mammalian and fly cells, elevates protein chaperone expression, ameliorates protein misfolding and cell death in polyQ-expressing neuronal precursor cells and protects against cytotoxicity in a fly model of polyQ-mediated neurodegeneration. In addition, we show that HSF1A interacts with components of the TRiC/CCT complex, suggesting a potentially novel regulatory role for this complex in modulating HSF1 activity. These studies describe a novel approach for the identification of new classes of pharmacological interventions for protein misfolding that underlies devastating neurodegenerative disease.

  3. Repression of Salmonella enterica phoP expression by small molecules from physiological bile. (United States)

    Antunes, L Caetano M; Wang, Melody; Andersen, Sarah K; Ferreira, Rosana B R; Kappelhoff, Reinhild; Han, Jun; Borchers, Christoph H; Finlay, B Brett


    Infection with Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi in humans causes the life-threatening disease typhoid fever. In the laboratory, typhoid fever can be modeled through the inoculation of susceptible mice with Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium. Using this murine model, we previously characterized the interactions between Salmonella Typhimurium and host cells in the gallbladder and showed that this pathogen can successfully invade gallbladder epithelial cells and proliferate. Additionally, we showed that Salmonella Typhimurium can use bile phospholipids to grow at high rates. These abilities are likely important for quick colonization of the gallbladder during typhoid fever and further pathogen dissemination through fecal shedding. To further characterize the interactions between Salmonella and the gallbladder environment, we compared the transcriptomes of Salmonella cultures grown in LB broth or physiological murine bile. Our data showed that many genes involved in bacterial central metabolism are affected by bile, with the citric acid cycle being repressed and alternative respiratory systems being activated. Additionally, our study revealed a new aspect of Salmonella interactions with bile through the identification of the global regulator phoP as a bile-responsive gene. Repression of phoP expression could also be achieved using physiological, but not commercial, bovine bile. The biological activity does not involve PhoPQ sensing of a bile component and is not caused by bile acids, the most abundant organic components of bile. Bioactivity-guided purification allowed the identification of a subset of small molecules from bile that can elicit full activity; however, a single compound with phoP inhibitory activity could not be isolated, suggesting that multiple molecules may act in synergy to achieve this effect. Due to the critical role of phoP in Salmonella virulence, further studies in this area will likely reveal aspects of the interaction between Salmonella

  4. A high-content subtractive screen for selecting small molecules affecting internalization of GPCRs

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Kwon, Y-J


    Full Text Available was screened against seven agonist-induced GPCR internalization cell models as well as transferrin uptake in human embryonic kidney cells. Molecules acting on a single receptor were identified through excluding pan-specific compounds affecting housekeeping...

  5. Transcriptional analysis of antiviral small molecule therapeutics as agonists of the RLR pathway

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.R. Green


    Full Text Available The recognition of pathogen associated molecular patterns (PAMPs by pattern recognition receptors (PRR during viral infection initiates the induction of antiviral signaling pathways, including activation of the Interferon Regulator Factor 3 (IRF3. We identified small molecule compounds that activate IRF3 through MAVS, thereby inhibiting infection by viruses of the families Flaviviridae (West Nile virus, dengue virus and hepatitis C virus, Filoviridae (Ebola virus, Orthomyxoviridae (influenza A virus, Arenaviridae (Lassa virus and Paramyxoviridae (respiratory syncytial virus, Nipah virus (1. In this study, we tested a lead compound along with medicinal chemistry-derived analogs to compare the gene transcriptional profiles induced by these molecules to that of other known MAVS-dependent IRF3 agonists. Transcriptional analysis of these small molecules revealed the induction of specific antiviral genes and identified a novel module of host driven immune regulated genes that suppress infection of a range of RNA viruses. Microarray data can be found in Gene Expression Omnibus (GSE74047.

  6. Small Molecule Drug Discovery at the Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 Receptor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francis S. Willard


    Full Text Available The therapeutic success of peptide glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1 receptor agonists for the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus has inspired discovery efforts aimed at developing orally available small molecule GLP-1 receptor agonists. Although the GLP-1 receptor is a member of the structurally complex class B1 family of GPCRs, in recent years, a diverse array of orthosteric and allosteric nonpeptide ligands has been reported. These compounds include antagonists, agonists, and positive allosteric modulators with intrinsic efficacy. In this paper, a comprehensive review of currently disclosed small molecule GLP-1 receptor ligands is presented. In addition, examples of “ligand bias” and “probe dependency” for the GLP-1 receptor are discussed; these emerging concepts may influence further optimization of known molecules or persuade designs of expanded screening strategies to identify novel chemical starting points for GLP-1 receptor drug discovery.

  7. Using nonlocal electrostatics for solvation free energy computations ions and small molecules

    CERN Document Server

    Hildebrandt, A; Blossey, R; Lenhof, H P


    Solvation free energy is an important quantity in Computational Chemistry with a variety of applications, especially in drug discovery and design. The accurate prediction of solvation free energies of small molecules in water is still a largely unsolved problem, which is mainly due to the complex nature of the water-solute interactions. In this letter we develop a scheme for the determination of the electrostatic contribution to the solvation free energy of charged molecules based on nonlocal electrostatics involving a minimal parameter set which in particular allows to introduce atomic radii in a consistent way. We test our approach on simple ions and small molecules for which both experimental results and other theoretical descriptions are available for quantitative comparison. We conclude that our approach is both physically transparent and quantitatively reliable.

  8. Controlling conformations of conjugated polymers and small molecules: the role of nonbonding interactions. (United States)

    Jackson, Nicholas E; Savoie, Brett M; Kohlstedt, Kevin L; Olvera de la Cruz, Monica; Schatz, George C; Chen, Lin X; Ratner, Mark A


    The chemical variety present in the organic electronics literature has motivated us to investigate potential nonbonding interactions often incorporated into conformational "locking" schemes. We examine a variety of potential interactions, including oxygen-sulfur, nitrogen-sulfur, and fluorine-sulfur, using accurate quantum-chemical wave function methods and noncovalent interaction (NCI) analysis on a selection of high-performing conjugated polymers and small molecules found in the literature. In addition, we evaluate a set of nonbonding interactions occurring between various heterocyclic and pendant atoms taken from a group of representative π-conjugated molecules. Together with our survey and set of interactions, it is determined that while many nonbonding interactions possess weak binding capabilities, nontraditional hydrogen-bonding interactions, oxygen-hydrogen (CH···O) and nitrogen-hydrogen (CH···N), are alone in inducing conformational control and enhanced planarity along a polymer or small molecule backbone at room temperature.

  9. Alkyne-tag Raman imaging for visualization of mobile small molecules in live cells. (United States)

    Yamakoshi, Hiroyuki; Dodo, Kosuke; Palonpon, Almar; Ando, Jun; Fujita, Katsumasa; Kawata, Satoshi; Sodeoka, Mikiko


    Alkyne has a unique Raman band that does not overlap with Raman scattering from any endogenous molecule in live cells. Here, we show that alkyne-tag Raman imaging (ATRI) is a promising approach for visualizing nonimmobilized small molecules in live cells. An examination of structure-Raman shift/intensity relationships revealed that alkynes conjugated to an aromatic ring and/or to a second alkyne (conjugated diynes) have strong Raman signals in the cellular silent region and can be excellent tags. Using these design guidelines, we synthesized and imaged a series of alkyne-tagged coenzyme Q (CoQ) analogues in live cells. Cellular concentrations of diyne-tagged CoQ analogues could be semiquantitatively estimated. Finally, simultaneous imaging of two small molecules, 5-ethynyl-2'-deoxyuridine (EdU) and a CoQ analogue, with distinct Raman tags was demonstrated.

  10. Small-molecule inhibition of APT1 affects Ras localization and signaling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dekker, Frank J.; Rocks, Oliver; Vartak, Nachiket; Menninger, Sascha; Hedberg, Christian; Balamurugan, Rengarajan; Wetzel, Stefan; Renner, Steffen; Gerauer, Marc; Schoelermann, Beate; Rusch, Marion; Kramer, John W.; Rauh, Daniel; Coates, Geoffrey W.; Brunsveld, Luc; Bastiaens, Philippe I. H.; Waldmann, Herbert


    Cycles of depalmitoylation and repalmitoylation critically control the steady-state localization and function of various peripheral membrane proteins, such as Ras proto-oncogene products. Interference with acylation using small molecules is a strategy to modulate cellular localization-and thereby un

  11. New serum markers for small-cell lung cancer. II. The neural cell adhesion molecule, NCAM

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vangsted, A; Drivsholm, L; Andersen, E;


    The neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) was recently suggested as a marker for small-cell lung cancer (SCLC). Immunohistochemical analysis demonstrated the presence of the NCAM in 78% of SCLC patients and in 25% of patients with other cancer forms. NCAM was proposed to be the most sensitive marker...

  12. Rhodanine dye-based small molecule acceptors for organic photovoltaic cells. (United States)

    Kim, Yujeong; Song, Chang Eun; Moon, Sang-Jin; Lim, Eunhee


    The solution-processable small molecules based on carbazole or fluorene containing rhodanine dyes at both ends were synthesized and introduced as acceptors in organic photovoltaic cells. The high energy levels of their lowest unoccupied molecular orbitals resulted in a power conversion efficiency of 3.08% and an open circuit voltage of up to 1.03 V.

  13. High-affinity small molecule-phospholipid complex formation: binding of siramesine to phosphatidicacid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khandelia, Himanshu


    , comparable to the affinities for the binding of small molecule ligands to proteins, was measured for phosphatidic acid (PA, mole fraction of XPA ) 0.2 in phosphatidylcholine vesicles), yielding a molecular partition coefficient of 240 ( 80 × 106. An MD simulation on the siramesine:PA interaction...

  14. Treatment of Prostate Cancer using Anti-androgen Small Molecules | NCI Technology Transfer Center | TTC (United States)

    The National Cancer Institute seeks parties interested in collaborative research to co-develop and commercialize a new class of small molecules for the treatment of prostate cancer. General information on co-development research collaborations, can be found on our web site (

  15. Small Molecule-Assisted Exfoliation of Layered Zirconium Phosphate Nanoplatelets by Ionic Liquids (United States)

    Xia, Fangqing; Yong, Huaisong; Han, Xiao; Sun, Dazhi


    Exfoliation of layered inorganic nanomaterials into single-layered sheets has been widely interested in materials chemistry and composite fabrication. Here, we report the exfoliation of layered zirconium phosphate nanoplatelets by using small molecule intercalating agents in ionic liquids, which opens a new platform for fabricating single-layered inorganic materials from synthetic layered compounds.

  16. Pre-clinical evaluation of small molecule LOXL2 inhibitors in breast cancer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chang, Joan; Lucas, Morghan C; Leonte, Lidia Elena


    Lysyl Oxidase-like 2 (LOXL2), a member of the lysyl oxidase family of amine oxidases is known to be important in normal tissue development and homeostasis, as well as the onset and progression of solid tumors. Here we tested the anti-tumor properties of two generations of novel small molecule LOX...

  17. A semantic web ontology for small molecules and their biological targets. (United States)

    Choi, Jooyoung; Davis, Melissa J; Newman, Andrew F; Ragan, Mark A


    A wide range of data on sequences, structures, pathways, and networks of genes and gene products is available for hypothesis testing and discovery in biological and biomedical research. However, data describing the physical, chemical, and biological properties of small molecules have not been well-integrated with these resources. Semantically rich representations of chemical data, combined with Semantic Web technologies, have the potential to enable the integration of small molecule and biomolecular data resources, expanding the scope and power of biomedical and pharmacological research. We employed the Semantic Web technologies Resource Description Framework (RDF) and Web Ontology Language (OWL) to generate a Small Molecule Ontology (SMO) that represents concepts and provides unique identifiers for biologically relevant properties of small molecules and their interactions with biomolecules, such as proteins. We instanced SMO using data from three public data sources, i.e., DrugBank, PubChem and UniProt, and converted to RDF triples. Evaluation of SMO by use of predetermined competency questions implemented as SPARQL queries demonstrated that data from chemical and biomolecular data sources were effectively represented and that useful knowledge can be extracted. These results illustrate the potential of Semantic Web technologies in chemical, biological, and pharmacological research and in drug discovery.

  18. Selecting, Acquiring, and Using Small Molecule Libraries for High-Throughput Screening. (United States)

    Dandapani, Sivaraman; Rosse, Gerard; Southall, Noel; Salvino, Joseph M; Thomas, Craig J

    The selection, acquisition and use of high quality small molecule libraries for screening is an essential aspect of drug discovery and chemical biology programs. Screening libraries continue to evolve as researchers gain a greater appreciation of the suitability of small molecules for specific biological targets, processes and environments. The decisions surrounding the make-up of any given small molecule library is informed by a multitude of variables and opinions vary on best-practices. The fitness of any collection relies upon upfront filtering to avoiding problematic compounds, assess appropriate physicochemical properties, install the ideal level of structural uniqueness and determine the desired extent of molecular complexity. These criteria are under constant evaluation and revision as academic and industrial organizations seek out collections that yield ever improving results from their screening portfolios. Practical questions including cost, compound management, screening sophistication and assay objective also play a significant role in the choice of library composition. This overview attempts to offer advice to all organizations engaged in small molecule screening based upon current best practices and theoretical considerations in library selection and acquisition.

  19. Diffusion nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy detects substoichiometric concentrations of small molecules in protein samples

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ribeiro, João P.; Palczewska, Małgorzata; André, Sabine; Cañada, F. Javier; Gabius, Hans-Joachim; Jiménez-Barbero, Jesús; Mellström, Britt; Naranjo, José R.; Scheffers, Dirk-Jan; Groves, Patrick


    Small molecules are difficult to detect in protein solutions, whether they originate from elution during affinity chromatography (e.g., imidazole, lactose), buffer exchange (Tris), stabilizers (e.g., β-mercaptoethanol, glycerol), or excess labeling reagents (fluorescent reagents). Mass spectrometry

  20. Comparison of small molecules and oligonucleotides that target a toxic, non-coding RNA. (United States)

    Costales, Matthew G; Rzuczek, Suzanne G; Disney, Matthew D


    Potential RNA targets for chemical probes and therapeutic modalities are pervasive in the transcriptome. Oligonucleotide-based therapeutics are commonly used to target RNA sequence. Small molecules are emerging as a modality to target RNA structures selectively, but their development is still in its infancy. In this work, we compare the activity of oligonucleotides and several classes of small molecules that target the non-coding r(CCUG) repeat expansion (r(CCUG)(exp)) that causes myotonic dystrophy type 2 (DM2), an incurable disease that is the second-most common cause of adult onset muscular dystrophy. Small molecule types investigated include monomers, dimers, and multivalent compounds synthesized on-site by using RNA-templated click chemistry. Oligonucleotides investigated include phosphorothioates that cleave their target and vivo-morpholinos that modulate target RNA activity via binding. We show that compounds assembled on-site that recognize structure have the highest potencies amongst small molecules and are similar in potency to a vivo-morpholino modified oligonucleotide that targets sequence. These studies are likely to impact the design of therapeutic modalities targeting other repeats expansions that cause fragile X syndrome and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, for example.

  1. Design of a bioactive small molecule that targets r(AUUCU) repeats in spinocerebellar ataxia 10. (United States)

    Yang, Wang-Yong; Gao, Rui; Southern, Mark; Sarkar, Partha S; Disney, Matthew D


    RNA is an important target for chemical probes of function and lead therapeutics; however, it is difficult to target with small molecules. One approach to tackle this problem is to identify compounds that target RNA structures and utilize them to multivalently target RNA. Here we show that small molecules can be identified to selectively bind RNA base pairs by probing a library of RNA-focused small molecules. A small molecule that selectively binds AU base pairs informed design of a dimeric compound (2AU-2) that targets the pathogenic RNA, expanded r(AUUCU) repeats, that causes spinocerebellar ataxia type 10 (SCA10) in patient-derived cells. Indeed, 2AU-2 (50 nM) ameliorates various aspects of SCA10 pathology including improvement of mitochondrial dysfunction, reduced activation of caspase 3, and reduction of nuclear foci. These studies provide a first-in-class chemical probe to study SCA10 RNA toxicity and potentially define broadly applicable compounds targeting RNA AU base pairs in cells.

  2. Small-molecule azomethines: organic photovoltaics via Schiff base condensation chemistry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Petrus,M. L.; Bouwer, R. K. M.; Lafont, U.; Athanasopoulos, S.; Greenham, N. C.; Dingemans, T. J.


    Conjugated small-molecule azomethines for photovoltaic applications were prepared via Schiff base condensation chemistry. Bulk heterojunction (BHJ) devices exhibit efficiencies of 1.2% with MoOx as the hole-transporting layer. The versatility and simplicity of the chemistry is illustrated by prepari

  3. Small molecule inhibition of protein depalmitoylation as a new approach towards downregulation of oncogenic Ras signalling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dekker, Frank J.; Hedberg, Christian


    The H- and N-Ras GTPases are prominent examples of proteins, whose localizations and signalling capacities are regulated by reversible palmitoylations and depalmitoylations. Recently, the novel small molecule inhibitor palmostatin B has been described to inhibit Ras depalmitoylation and to revert th

  4. A Small Molecule that Induces Intrinsic Pathway Apoptosis with Unparalleled Speed

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    R. Palchaudhuri (Rahul); M.J. Lambrecht (Michael J.); R.C. Botham (Rachel C.); K.C. Partlow (Kathryn C.); T.J. vanHam (Tjakko J.); K.S. Putt (Karson S.); L.T. Nguyen (Laurie T.); S.-H. Kim (Seok-Ho); R.T. Peterson (Randall); T.M. Fan (Timothy M.); P.J. Hergenrother (Paul J.)


    textabstractApoptosis is generally believed to be a process thatrequires several hours, in contrast to non-programmed forms of cell death that can occur in minutes. Our findings challenge the time-consuming nature of apoptosis as we describe the discovery and characterization of a small molecule, na

  5. Design, synthesis and evaluation of small molecule reactive oxygen species generators as selective Mycobacterium tuberculosis inhibitors. (United States)

    Dharmaraja, Allimuthu T; Alvala, Mallika; Sriram, Dharmarajan; Yogeeswari, Perumal; Chakrapani, Harinath


    Here, we report 5-hydroxy-1,2,3,4,4a,9a-hexahydro-1,4-ethano-9,10-anthraquinone (13), a small molecule generating reactive oxygen species (ROS) in pH 7.4 buffer under ambient aerobic conditions that has selective and potent Mycobacterium tuberculosis growth inhibitory activity.

  6. Small-molecule azomethines: organic photovoltaics via Schiff base condensation chemistry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Petrus,M. L.; Bouwer, R. K. M.; Lafont, U.; Athanasopoulos, S.; Greenham, N. C.; Dingemans, T. J.


    Conjugated small-molecule azomethines for photovoltaic applications were prepared via Schiff base condensation chemistry. Bulk heterojunction (BHJ) devices exhibit efficiencies of 1.2% with MoOx as the hole-transporting layer. The versatility and simplicity of the chemistry is illustrated by


    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ruud, K.; Helgaker, T.; Jørgensen, Poul


    We report a systematic investigation of the magnetizability of a series of small molecules. The use of London atomic orbitals ensures gauge invariance and a fast basis set convergence. Good agreement is obtained with experimental magnetizabilities, both isotropic and anisotropic. The calculations...

  8. Small-molecule agonists for the glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, Lotte Bjerre; Kiel, Dan; Teng, Min


    The peptide hormone glucagon-like peptide (GLP)-1 has important actions resulting in glucose lowering along with weight loss in patients with type 2 diabetes. As a peptide hormone, GLP-1 has to be administered by injection. Only a few small-molecule agonists to peptide hormone receptors have been...

  9. MARTINI Model for Physisorption of Organic Molecules on Graphite

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gobbo, Cristian; Beurroies, Isabelle; de Ridder, David; Eelkema, Rienk; Marrink, Siewert J.; De Feyter, Steven; van Esch, Jan H.; de Vries, Alex H.


    An extension to the MARTINI coarse-grained model is presented to describe the adsorption of organic molecules on graphite surfaces. The model allows the study of the dynamics of the preferential adsorption of long-chain organic molecules from solvent and the formation of ordered structures on the su


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhu Jun; Cheng Yan; Chen Xiang-rong; Gou Qing-quan


    A four-parameter nonlinear model is introduced to the description of theX - Y stretching modes of XY6 octahedral molecules in the electronicground state. We here only apply it to the calculations of S--Fstretches of SF6 molecule. The model calculations appear to describethe observed data well, and predict some new vibrational bands ataccurate energies not yet observed.

  11. Rationally designed small molecules that target both the DNA and RNA causing myotonic dystrophy type 1. (United States)

    Nguyen, Lien; Luu, Long M; Peng, Shaohong; Serrano, Julio F; Chan, H Y Edwin; Zimmerman, Steven C


    Single-agent, single-target therapeutic approaches are often limited by a complex disease pathobiology. We report rationally designed, multi-target agents for myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1). DM1 originates in an abnormal expansion of CTG repeats (CTG(exp)) in the DMPK gene. The resultant expanded CUG transcript (CUG(exp)) identified as a toxic agent sequesters important proteins, such as muscleblind-like proteins (MBNL), undergoes repeat-associated non-ATG (RAN) translation, and potentially causes microRNA dysregulation. We report rationally designed small molecules that target the DM1 pathobiology in vitro in three distinct ways by acting simultaneously as transcription inhibitors, by inhibiting aberrant protein binding to the toxic RNA, and by acting as RNase mimics to degrade the toxic RNA. In vitro, the agents are shown to (1) bind CTG(exp) and inhibit formation of the CUG(exp) transcript, (2) bind CUG(exp) and inhibit sequestration of MBNL1, and (3) cleave CUG(exp) in an RNase-like manner. The most potent compounds are capable of reducing the levels of CUG(exp) in DM1 model cells, and one reverses two separate CUG(exp)-induced phenotypes in a DM1 Drosophila model.

  12. Identification of Small-Molecule Inhibitors against Meso-2, 6-Diaminopimelate Dehydrogenase from Porphyromonas gingivalis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victoria N Stone

    Full Text Available Species-specific antimicrobial therapy has the potential to combat the increasing threat of antibiotic resistance and alteration of the human microbiome. We therefore set out to demonstrate the beginning of a pathogen-selective drug discovery method using the periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis as a model. Through our knowledge of metabolic networks and essential genes we identified a "druggable" essential target, meso-diaminopimelate dehydrogenase, which is found in a limited number of species. We adopted a high-throughput virtual screen method on the ZINC chemical library to select a group of potential small-molecule inhibitors. Meso-diaminopimelate dehydrogenase from P. gingivalis was first expressed and purified in Escherichia coli then characterized for enzymatic inhibitor screening studies. Several inhibitors with similar structural scaffolds containing a sulfonamide core and aromatic substituents showed dose-dependent inhibition. These compounds were further assayed showing reasonable whole-cell activity and the inhibition mechanism was determined. We conclude that the establishment of this target and screening strategy provides a model for the future development of new antimicrobials.

  13. Amending HIV Drugs: A Novel Small-Molecule Approach To Target Lupus Anti-DNA Antibodies. (United States)

    VanPatten, Sonya; Sun, Shan; He, Mingzhu; Cheng, Kai Fan; Altiti, Ahmad; Papatheodorou, Angelos; Kowal, Czeslawa; Jeganathan, Venkatesh; Crawford, James M; Bloom, Ona; Volpe, Bruce T; Grant, Christian; Meurice, Nathalie; Coleman, Thomas R; Diamond, Betty; Al-Abed, Yousef


    Systemic lupus erythematosus is an autoimmune disease that can affect numerous tissues and is characterized by the production of nuclear antigen-directed autoantibodies (e.g., anti-dsDNA). Using a combination of virtual and ELISA-based screens, we made the intriguing discovery that several HIV-protease inhibitors can function as decoy antigens to specifically inhibit the binding of anti-dsDNA antibodies to target antigens such as dsDNA and pentapeptide DWEYS. Computational modeling revealed that HIV-protease inhibitors comprised structural features present in DWEYS and predicted that analogues containing more flexible backbones would possess preferred binding characteristics. To address this, we reduced the internal amide backbone to improve flexibility, producing new small-molecule decoy antigens, which neutralize anti-dsDNA antibodies in vitro, in situ, and in vivo. Pharmacokinetic and SLE model studies demonstrated that peptidomimetic FISLE-412,1 a reduced HIV protease inhibitor analogue, was well-tolerated, altered serum reactivity to DWEYS, reduced glomeruli IgG deposition, preserved kidney histology, and delayed SLE onset in NZB/W F1 mice.

  14. A small-molecule inhibitor of the NLRP3 inflammasome for the treatment of inflammatory diseases. (United States)

    Coll, Rebecca C; Robertson, Avril A B; Chae, Jae Jin; Higgins, Sarah C; Muñoz-Planillo, Raúl; Inserra, Marco C; Vetter, Irina; Dungan, Lara S; Monks, Brian G; Stutz, Andrea; Croker, Daniel E; Butler, Mark S; Haneklaus, Moritz; Sutton, Caroline E; Núñez, Gabriel; Latz, Eicke; Kastner, Daniel L; Mills, Kingston H G; Masters, Seth L; Schroder, Kate; Cooper, Matthew A; O'Neill, Luke A J


    The NOD-like receptor (NLR) family, pyrin domain-containing protein 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome is a component of the inflammatory process, and its aberrant activation is pathogenic in inherited disorders such as cryopyrin-associated periodic syndrome (CAPS) and complex diseases such as multiple sclerosis, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer's disease and atherosclerosis. We describe the development of MCC950, a potent, selective, small-molecule inhibitor of NLRP3. MCC950 blocked canonical and noncanonical NLRP3 activation at nanomolar concentrations. MCC950 specifically inhibited activation of NLRP3 but not the AIM2, NLRC4 or NLRP1 inflammasomes. MCC950 reduced interleukin-1β (IL-1β) production in vivo and attenuated the severity of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a disease model of multiple sclerosis. Furthermore, MCC950 treatment rescued neonatal lethality in a mouse model of CAPS and was active in ex vivo samples from individuals with Muckle-Wells syndrome. MCC950 is thus a potential therapeutic for NLRP3-associated syndromes, including autoinflammatory and autoimmune diseases, and a tool for further study of the NLRP3 inflammasome in human health and disease.

  15. Vismodegib, a small-molecule inhibitor of the hedgehog pathway for the treatment of advanced cancers. (United States)

    De Smaele, Enrico; Ferretti, Elisabetta; Gulino, Alberto


    Vismodegib (GDC-0449) is a small, orally administrable molecule, belonging to the 2-arylpyridine class, which was discovered by Genentech Inc under a collaboration with Curis Inc. Vismodegib inhibits the Hedgehog (Hh) pathway, which is involved in tumorigenesis, thus providing a strong rationale for its use in the treatment of a variety of cancers. Vismodegib suppresses Hh signaling by binding to and interfering with smoothened, a membrane protein that provides positive signals to the Hh signaling pathway. Preclinical studies demonstrated the antitumor activity of vismodegib in mouse models of medulloblastoma (MB) and in xenograft models of colorectal and pancreatic cancer. Phase I clinical trials in patients with advanced basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and MB highlighted an objective response to vismodegib. Reported side effects were minor, with only one grade 4 adverse event. Vismodegib is currently undergoing phase II clinical trials for the treatment of advanced BCC, metastatic colorectal cancer, ovarian cancer, MB and other solid tumors. Because of its low toxicity and specificity for the Hh pathway, this drug has potential advantages compared with conventional chemotherapy, and may also be used in combination treatments. Clinical trials with other Hh inhibitors are also ongoing and their therapeutic potential will need to be compared with vismodegib.

  16. Potentiometric sensors doped with biomolecules as a new approach to small molecule/biomolecule binding kinetics analysis. (United States)

    Daems, D; De Wael, K; Vissenberg, K; Van Camp, G; Nagels, L


    The most successful binding kinetics analysis systems at this moment include surface plasmon resonance (SPR), quartz microcrystal balance (QMB) and surface acoustic wave (SAW). Although these are powerful methods, they generally are complex, expensive and require the use of monolayers. Here, we report on potentiometric sensors as an inexpensive and simple alternative to do binding kinetics analysis between small molecules in solution and biomolecules (covalently) attached in a biopolymer sensor coating layer. As an example, dopamine and an anti-dopamine aptamer were used as the small molecule and the biomolecule respectively. Binding between both follows a Langmuir adsorption type model and creates a surface potential. The system operates in Flow Injection Analysis mode (FIA). Besides being an interesting new binding kinetics tool, the approach allows systematic design of potentiometric biosensors (in the present study a dopamine sensor), and gives new insights into the functioning of ion-selective electrodes (ISE's).

  17. Structure-based drug design of small molecule SIRT1 modulators to treat cancer and metabolic disorders. (United States)

    Pulla, Venkat Koushik; Alvala, Mallika; Sriram, Dinavahi Saketh; Viswanadha, Srikant; Sriram, Dharmarajan; Yogeeswari, Perumal


    Sirtuins comprise a family of deacetylase enzymes that catalyze the removal of an acetyl moiety from the ɛ-amino group of lysine residues within protein targets. Sirtuin 1(SIRT1), a NAD(+) dependent class III histone deacetylase is involved in a variety of human disorders such as obesity, type II diabetes, cancer and aging. Inhibition of SIRT1 could be useful for cancer treatment while activators can be useful for longevity and treating metabolic disorders. Hence we undertook an effort to design both inhibitors and activators using structure-based drug design techniques and report here the biological proof of concept. In this paper, we report diverse small molecule inhibitors with a potential to attenuate cancer growth designed based on high-throughput virtual screening and docking using the crystal structure of SIRT1. And small molecule activators with potential to suppress adipogenesis differentiation indicating their usefulness in obesity control was designed based on a homology model of SIRT1 activator domain.

  18. In silico mechanistic profiling to probe small molecule binding to sulfotransferases. (United States)

    Martiny, Virginie Y; Carbonell, Pablo; Lagorce, David; Villoutreix, Bruno O; Moroy, Gautier; Miteva, Maria A


    Drug metabolizing enzymes play a key role in the metabolism, elimination and detoxification of xenobiotics, drugs and endogenous molecules. While their principal role is to detoxify organisms by modifying compounds, such as pollutants or drugs, for a rapid excretion, in some cases they render their substrates more toxic thereby inducing severe side effects and adverse drug reactions, or their inhibition can lead to drug-drug interactions. We focus on sulfotransferases (SULTs), a family of phase II metabolizing enzymes, acting on a large number of drugs and hormones and showing important structural flexibility. Here we report a novel in silico structure-based approach to probe ligand binding to SULTs. We explored the flexibility of SULTs by molecular dynamics (MD) simulations in order to identify the most suitable multiple receptor conformations for ligand binding prediction. Then, we employed structure-based docking-scoring approach to predict ligand binding and finally we combined the predicted interaction energies by using a QSAR methodology. The results showed that our protocol successfully prioritizes potent binders for the studied here SULT1 isoforms, and give new insights on specific molecular mechanisms for diverse ligands' binding related to their binding sites plasticity. Our best QSAR models, introducing predicted protein-ligand interaction energy by using docking, showed accuracy of 67.28%, 78.00% and 75.46%, for the isoforms SULT1A1, SULT1A3 and SULT1E1, respectively. To the best of our knowledge our protocol is the first in silico structure-based approach consisting of a protein-ligand interaction analysis at atomic level that considers both ligand and enzyme flexibility, along with a QSAR approach, to identify small molecules that can interact with II phase dug metabolizing enzymes.

  19. Sustained release of small molecules from carbon nanotube-reinforced monetite calcium phosphate cement. (United States)

    Lin, Boren; Zhou, Huan; Leaman, Douglas W; Goel, Vijay K; Agarwal, Anand K; Bhaduri, Sarit B


    The interest in developing calcium phosphate cement (CPC) as a drug delivery system has risen because of its capability to achieve local and controlled treatment to the site of the bone disease. The purpose of this study was to investigate the release pattern of drug-carrying carboxylic acid-functionalized multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWCNT)-reinforced monetite (DCPA, CaHPO4)-based CPC. Z-Leu-Leu-Leu-al (MG132), a small peptide molecule inhibiting NF-κB-mediated osteoclastic resorption, was used as a model drug. MG132 was added into the cement during setting and released into the medium used to culture indicator cells. Significant cell death was observed in osteoblast MC3T3-E1 cells cultured in the medium incubated with MG132-loaded CPC; however, with the presence of MWCNTs in the cement, the toxic effect was not detectable. NF-κB activation was quantified using a NF-κB promoter-driving luciferase reporter in human embryonic kidney 293 cells. The medium collected after incubation with drug-incorporated CPC with or without MWCNT inhibited TNFα-induced NF-κB activation indicating that the effective amount of MG132 was released. CPC/drug complex showed a rapid release within 24h whereas incorporation of MWCNTs attenuated this burst release effect. In addition, suppression of TNFα-induced osteoclast differentiation in RAW 264.7 cell culture also confirmed the sustained release of MWCNT/CPC/drug. Our data demonstrated the drug delivery capability of this cement composite, which can potentially be used to carry therapeutic molecules to improve bone regeneration in conjunction with its fracture stabilizing function. Furthermore, it suggested a novel approach to lessen the burst release effect of the CPC-based drug delivery system by incorporating functionalized MWCNTs.

  20. In silico mechanistic profiling to probe small molecule binding to sulfotransferases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginie Y Martiny

    Full Text Available Drug metabolizing enzymes play a key role in the metabolism, elimination and detoxification of xenobiotics, drugs and endogenous molecules. While their principal role is to detoxify organisms by modifying compounds, such as pollutants or drugs, for a rapid excretion, in some cases they render their substrates more toxic thereby inducing severe side effects and adverse drug reactions, or their inhibition can lead to drug-drug interactions. We focus on sulfotransferases (SULTs, a family of phase II metabolizing enzymes, acting on a large number of drugs and hormones and showing important structural flexibility. Here we report a novel in silico structure-based approach to probe ligand binding to SULTs. We explored the flexibility of SULTs by molecular dynamics (MD simulations in order to identify the most suitable multiple receptor conformations for ligand binding prediction. Then, we employed structure-based docking-scoring approach to predict ligand binding and finally we combined the predicted interaction energies by using a QSAR methodology. The results showed that our protocol successfully prioritizes potent binders for the studied here SULT1 isoforms, and give new insights on specific molecular mechanisms for diverse ligands' binding related to their binding sites plasticity. Our best QSAR models, introducing predicted protein-ligand interaction energy by using docking, showed accuracy of 67.28%, 78.00% and 75.46%, for the isoforms SULT1A1, SULT1A3 and SULT1E1, respectively. To the best of our knowledge our protocol is the first in silico structure-based approach consisting of a protein-ligand interaction analysis at atomic level that considers both ligand and enzyme flexibility, along with a QSAR approach, to identify small molecules that can interact with II phase dug metabolizing enzymes.

  1. A high throughput screening assay system for the identification of small molecule inhibitors of gsp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nisan Bhattacharyya

    Full Text Available Mis-sense mutations in the α-subunit of the G-protein, Gsα, cause fibrous dysplasia of bone/McCune-Albright syndrome. The biochemical outcome of these mutations is constitutively active Gsα and increased levels of cAMP. The aim of this study was to develop an assay system that would allow the identification of small molecule inhibitors specific for the mutant Gsα protein, the so-called gsp oncogene. Commercially available Chinese hamster ovary cells were stably transfected with either wild-type (WT or mutant Gsα proteins (R201C and R201H. Stable cell lines with equivalent transfected Gsα protein expression that had relatively lower (WT or higher (R201C and R201H cAMP levels were generated. These cell lines were used to develop a fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET-based cAMP assay in 1536-well microplate format for high throughput screening of small molecule libraries. A small molecule library of 343,768 compounds was screened to identify modulators of gsp activity. A total of 1,356 compounds with inhibitory activity were initially identified and reconfirmed when tested in concentration dose responses. Six hundred eighty-six molecules were selected for further analysis after removing cytotoxic compounds and those that were active in forskolin-induced WT cells. These molecules were grouped by potency, efficacy, and structural similarities to yield 22 clusters with more than 5 of structurally similar members and 144 singleton molecules. Seven chemotypes of the major clusters were identified for further testing and analyses.

  2. A novel caspase 8 selective small molecule potentiates TRAIL-induced cell death. (United States)

    Bucur, Octavian; Gaidos, Gabriel; Yatawara, Achani; Pennarun, Bodvael; Rupasinghe, Chamila; Roux, Jérémie; Andrei, Stefan; Guo, Bingqian; Panaitiu, Alexandra; Pellegrini, Maria; Mierke, Dale F; Khosravi-Far, Roya


    Recombinant soluble TRAIL and agonistic antibodies against TRAIL receptors (DR4 and DR5) are currently being created for clinical cancer therapy, due to their selective killing of cancer cells and high safety characteristics. However, resistance to TRAIL and other targeted therapies is an important issue facing current cancer research field. An attractive strategy to sensitize resistant malignancies to TRAIL-induced cell death is the design of small molecules that target and promote caspase 8 activation. For the first time, we describe the discovery and characterization of a small molecule that directly binds caspase 8 and enhances its activation when combined with TRAIL, but not alone. The molecule was identified through an in silico chemical screen for compounds with affinity for the caspase 8 homodimer's interface. The compound was experimentally validated to directly bind caspase 8, and to promote caspase 8 activation and cell death in single living cells or population of cells, upon TRAIL stimulation. Our approach is a proof-of-concept strategy leading to the discovery of a novel small molecule that not only stimulates TRAIL-induced apoptosis in cancer cells, but may also provide insights into the structure-function relationship of caspase 8 homodimers as putative targets in cancer.

  3. The small molecule Retro-1 enhances the pharmacological actions of antisense and splice switching oligonucleotides. (United States)

    Ming, Xin; Carver, Kyle; Fisher, Michael; Noel, Romain; Cintrat, Jean-Christophe; Gillet, Daniel; Barbier, Julien; Cao, Canhong; Bauman, John; Juliano, Rudolph L


    The attainment of strong pharmacological effects with oligonucleotides is hampered by inefficient access of these molecules to their sites of action in the cytosol or nucleus. Attempts to address this problem with lipid or polymeric delivery systems have been only partially successful. Here, we describe a novel alternative approach involving the use of a non-toxic small molecule to enhance the pharmacological effects of oligonucleotides. The compound Retro-1 was discovered in a screen for small molecules that reduce the actions of bacterial toxins and has been shown to block the retrograde trafficking pathway. We demonstrate that Retro-1 can also substantially enhance the effectiveness of antisense and splice switching oligonucleotides in cell culture. This effect occurs at the level of intracellular trafficking or processing and is correlated with increased oligonucleotide accumulation in the nucleus but does not involve the perturbation of lysosomal compartments. We also show that Retro-1 can alter the effectiveness of splice switching oligonucleotides in the in vivo setting. These observations indicate that it is possible to enhance the pharmacological actions of oligonucleotides using non-toxic and non-lysosomotropic small molecule adjuncts.

  4. Structure elucidation of uniformly 13C labeled small molecule natural products. (United States)

    Reibarkh, Mikhail; Wyche, Thomas P; Saurí, Josep; Bugni, Tim S; Martin, Gary E; Williamson, R Thomas


    Utilization of isotopically labeled proteins and peptides is a routinely employed approach in biomolecular NMR investigations. The widespread availability of inexpensive, uniformly (13) C-enriched glucose now makes it possible to produce uniformly (13) C-labeled natural products by microbial fermentation. In this feature article, the authors describe an experimental approach for the rapid structural characterization of uniformly (13) C-labeled natural products based on the Constant-Time HSQC (CT-HSQC) experiment. Rigorous theoretical evaluation of the CT-HSQC experiment allowed the applicability of the experiment to be expanded from the traditional, narrow scope of labeled amino acids to encompass virtually any small molecule or U-(13) C labeled natural product. A suite of experiments including CT-HSQC, (13) C-(13) C COSY, and COSYLR experiments is sufficient for the structure elucidation of uniformly (13) C-labeled small molecules and natural products. Differences in NMR approaches for structure elucidation of natural abundance and uniformly (13) C-labeled molecules are also discussed. The present work provides a researcher working in this area of natural products chemistry with NMR structure elucidation tools for investigating (13) C-labeled small molecules and natural products.

  5. Approach for targeting Ras with small molecules that activate SOS-mediated nucleotide exchange. (United States)

    Burns, Michael C; Sun, Qi; Daniels, R Nathan; Camper, DeMarco; Kennedy, J Phillip; Phan, Jason; Olejniczak, Edward T; Lee, Taekyu; Waterson, Alex G; Rossanese, Olivia W; Fesik, Stephen W


    Aberrant activation of the small GTPase Ras by oncogenic mutation or constitutively active upstream receptor tyrosine kinases results in the deregulation of cellular signals governing growth and survival in ∼30% of all human cancers. However, the discovery of potent inhibitors of Ras has been difficult to achieve. Here, we report the identification of small molecules that bind to a unique pocket on the Ras:Son of Sevenless (SOS):Ras complex, increase the rate of SOS-catalyzed nucleotide exchange in vitro, and modulate Ras signaling pathways in cells. X-ray crystallography of Ras:SOS:Ras in complex with these molecules reveals that the compounds bind in a hydrophobic pocket in the CDC25 domain of SOS adjacent to the Switch II region of Ras. The structure-activity relationships exhibited by these compounds can be rationalized on the basis of multiple X-ray cocrystal structures. Mutational analyses confirmed the functional relevance of this binding site and showed it to be essential for compound activity. These molecules increase Ras-GTP levels and disrupt MAPK and PI3K signaling in cells at low micromolar concentrations. These small molecules represent tools to study the acute activation of Ras and highlight a pocket on SOS that may be exploited to modulate Ras signaling.

  6. Detection of small molecules by an evanescent wave fiber optic biosensor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shriver-Lake, L.C.; Ligler, F.S. [Naval Research Lab., Washington, DC (United States). Center for Bio/Molecular Science and Engineering


    Detection of small molecules is important in environmental analyses as most pollutants are low molecular weight compounds. Utilizing the specificity of antibodies, the rapid signal transduction of optical fibers and the signal-to-noise discrimination of fluorescence, an evanescent wave fiber optic-based biosensor was modified for the detection of these molecules. To facilitate the isolation of personnel and equipment from hazardous environments, long partially clad optical fibers are employed. Antibodies were immobilized on the 10 cm sensing region at the distal portion of the optical fiber probe. A 200 {micro}l sample chamber was fabricated from a capillary tube. The core of the fiber in the sensing region is tapered for maximum signal recovery. A competitive immunoassay was performed. Basically, the small molecule competes with a fluorescently-labelled analog for the capture antibody binding sites. As the level of analyte increases in the sample, the fluorescent signal decreases. Two assays for the small molecules, trinitrotoluene (TNT) and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) will be described. Detection levels of 10 ng/ml TNT (8 ppb) have been achieved with this sensor.

  7. A small-molecule drug conjugate for the treatment of carbonic anhydrase IX expressing tumors. (United States)

    Krall, Nikolaus; Pretto, Francesca; Decurtins, Willy; Bernardes, Gonçalo J L; Supuran, Claudiu T; Neri, Dario


    Antibody-drug conjugates are a very promising class of new anticancer agents, but the use of small-molecule ligands for the targeted delivery of cytotoxic drugs into solid tumors is less well established. Here, we describe the first small-molecule drug conjugates for the treatment of carbonic anhydrase IX expressing solid tumors. Using ligand-dye conjugates we demonstrate that such molecules can preferentially accumulate inside antigen-positive lesions, have fast targeting kinetics and good tumor-penetrating properties, and are easily accessible by total synthesis. A disulfide-linked drug conjugate with the maytansinoid DM1 as the cytotoxic payload and a derivative of acetazolamide as the targeting ligand exhibited a potent antitumor effect in SKRC52 renal cell carcinoma in vivo. It was furthermore superior to sunitinib and sorafenib, both small-molecule standard-of-care drugs for the treatment of kidney cancer. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  8. Prediction of adsorption of small molecules in porous materials based on ab initio force field method

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Computational prediction of adsorption of small molecules in porous materials has great impact on the basic and applied research in chemical engineering and material sciences. In this work,we report an approach based on grand canonical ensemble Monte Carlo(GCMC) simulations and ab initio force fields. We calculated the adsorption curves of ammonia in ZSM-5 zeolite and hydrogen in MOF-5(a metal-organic-framework material). The predictions agree well with experimental data. Because the predictions are based on the first principle force fields,this approach can be used for the adsorption prediction of new molecules or materials without experimental data as guidance.

  9. In Vitro Selection for Small-Molecule-Triggered Strand Displacement and Riboswitch Activity. (United States)

    Martini, Laura; Meyer, Adam J; Ellefson, Jared W; Milligan, John N; Forlin, Michele; Ellington, Andrew D; Mansy, Sheref S


    An in vitro selection method for ligand-responsive RNA sensors was developed that exploited strand displacement reactions. The RNA library was based on the thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP) riboswitch, and RNA sequences capable of hybridizing to a target duplex DNA in a TPP regulated manner were identified. After three rounds of selection, RNA molecules that mediated a strand exchange reaction upon TPP binding were enriched. The enriched sequences also showed riboswitch activity. Our results demonstrated that small-molecule-responsive nucleic acid sensors can be selected to control the activity of target nucleic acid circuitry.

  10. A quantitative application of the J-based configuration analysis method to a flexible small molecule. (United States)

    Sharman, Gary J


    An example of the use of the J-based configuration analysis method to determine relative stereochemistry of a small molecule related to reboxetine is described. This study was complicated by the fact that the molecule did not exhibit J-couplings and NOEs consistent with a single conformation, but rather an ensemble average. A quantitative fitting procedure using predicted couplings and NOEs from all possible conformers was used. This gave a clear indication of the stereochemistry, and the populations of the conformers involved.

  11. SLAP: Small Labeling Pair for Single-Molecule Super-Resolution Imaging. (United States)

    Wieneke, Ralph; Raulf, Anika; Kollmannsperger, Alina; Heilemann, Mike; Tampé, Robert


    Protein labeling with synthetic fluorescent probes is a key technology in chemical biology and biomedical research. A sensitive and efficient modular labeling approach (SLAP) was developed on the basis of a synthetic small-molecule recognition unit (Ni-trisNTA) and the genetically encoded minimal protein His6-10 -tag. High-density protein tracing by SLAP was demonstrated. This technique allows super-resolution fluorescence imaging and fulfills the necessary sampling criteria for single-molecule localization-based imaging techniques. It avoids masking by large probes, for example, antibodies, and supplies sensitive, precise, and robust size analysis of protein clusters (nanodomains).

  12. Transitional Description of Diatomic Molecules in U(4) Vibron Model

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Xin; PAN Feng


    U(3)-O(4) transitional description of diatomic molecules in the U(4) vibron model is studied by using the algebraic Bethe ansatz, in which the O(4) limit is a special case of the theory. Vibrational band-heads of some typical diatornic molecules are fitted by both transitional theory and the O(4) limit within the same framework. The results show that there are evident deviations from the O(4) limit in description of vibrational spectra of some diatomic molecules.

  13. Psmir: a database of potential associations between small molecules and miRNAs. (United States)

    Meng, Fanlin; Wang, Jing; Dai, Enyu; Yang, Feng; Chen, Xiaowen; Wang, Shuyuan; Yu, Xuexin; Liu, Dianming; Jiang, Wei


    miRNAs are key post-transcriptional regulators of many essential biological processes, and their dysregulation has been validated in almost all human cancers. Restoring aberrantly expressed miRNAs might be a novel therapeutics. Recently, many studies have demonstrated that small molecular compounds can affect miRNA expression. Thus, prediction of associations between small molecules and miRNAs is important for investigation of miRNA-targeted drugs. Here, we analyzed 39 miRNA-perturbed gene expression profiles, and then calculated the similarity of transcription responses between miRNA perturbation and drug treatment to predict drug-miRNA associations. At the significance level of 0.05, we obtained 6501 candidate associations between 1295 small molecules and 25 miRNAs, which included 624 FDA approved drugs. Finally, we constructed the Psmir database to store all potential associations and the related materials. In a word, Psmir served as a valuable resource for dissecting the biological significance in small molecules' effects on miRNA expression, which will facilitate developing novel potential therapeutic targets or treatments for human cancers. Psmir is supported by all major browsers, and is freely available at

  14. Electrocatalysis and electroanalysis of nickel, its oxides, hydroxides and oxyhydroxides toward small molecules. (United States)

    Miao, Yuqing; Ouyang, Lei; Zhou, Shilin; Xu, Lina; Yang, Zhuoyuan; Xiao, Mingshu; Ouyang, Ruizhuo


    The electrocatalysis toward small molecules, especially small organic compounds, is of importance in a variety of areas. Nickel based materials such as nickel, its oxides, hydroxides as well as oxyhydroxides exhibit excellent electrocatalysis performances toward many small molecules, which are widely used for fuel cells, energy storage, organic synthesis, wastewater treatment, and electrochemical sensors for pharmaceutical, medical, food or environmental analysis. Their electrocatalytic mechanisms are proposed from three aspects such as Ni(OH)2/NiOOH mediated electrolysis, direct electrocatalysis of Ni(OH)2 or NiOOH. Under exposure to air or aqueous solution, two distinct layers form on the Ni surface with a Ni hydroxide layer at the air-oxide interface and an oxide layer between the metal substrate and the outer hydroxide layer. The transformation from nickel or its oxides to hydroxides or oxyhydroxides could be further speeded up in the strong alkaline solution under the cyclic scanning at relatively high positive potential. The redox transition between Ni(OH)2 and NiOOH is also contributed to the electrocatalytic oxidation of Ni and its oxides toward small molecules in alkaline media. In addition, nickel based materials or nanomaterials, their preparations and applications are also overviewed here.

  15. Small Molecule-Induced Complement Factor D (Adipsin) Promotes Lipid Accumulation and Adipocyte Differentiation. (United States)

    Song, No-Joon; Kim, Suji; Jang, Byung-Hyun; Chang, Seo-Hyuk; Yun, Ui Jeong; Park, Ki-Moon; Waki, Hironori; Li, Dean Y; Tontonoz, Peter; Park, Kye Won


    Adipocytes are differentiated by various transcriptional cascades integrated on the master regulator, Pparγ. To discover new genes involved in adipocyte differentiation, preadipocytes were treated with three newly identified pro-adipogenic small molecules and GW7845 (a Pparγ agonist) for 24 hours and transcriptional profiling was analyzed. Four genes, Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (Pparγ), human complement factor D homolog (Cfd), Chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 9 (Ccl9), and GIPC PDZ Domain Containing Family Member 2 (Gipc2) were induced by at least two different small molecules but not by GW7845. Cfd and Ccl9 expressions were specific to adipocytes and they were altered in obese mice. Small hairpin RNA (shRNA) mediated knockdown of Cfd in preadipocytes inhibited lipid accumulation and expression of adipocyte markers during adipocyte differentiation. Overexpression of Cfd promoted adipocyte differentiation, increased C3a production, and led to induction of C3a receptor (C3aR) target gene expression. Similarly, treatments with C3a or C3aR agonist (C4494) also promoted adipogenesis. C3aR knockdown suppressed adipogenesis and impaired the pro-adipogenic effects of Cfd, further suggesting the necessity for C3aR signaling in Cfd-mediated pro-adipogenic axis. Together, these data show the action of Cfd in adipogenesis and underscore the application of small molecules to identify genes in adipocytes.

  16. Small molecule inhibition of 6-phosphofructo-2-kinase suppresses t cell activation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Telang Sucheta


    synthesis, 2-[1-14C]-deoxy-D-glucose uptake, lactate secretion, TNF-α secretion and T cell aggregation and proliferation. We examined the in vivo effect of 3PO on the development of delayed type hypersensitivity to methylated BSA and on imiquimod-induced psoriasis in mice and found that 3PO suppressed the development of both T cell-dependent models of immunity in vivo. Conclusions Our data demonstrate that inhibition of the PFKFB3 kinase activity attenuates the activation of T cells in vitro and suppresses T cell dependent immunity in vivo and indicate that small molecule antagonists of PFKFB3 may prove effective as T cell immunosuppressive agents.

  17. Human Sarcoma growth is sensitive to small-molecule mediated AXIN stabilization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra De Robertis

    Full Text Available Sarcomas are mesenchymal tumors showing high molecular heterogeneity, reflected at the histological level by the existence of more than fifty different subtypes. Genetic and epigenetic evidences link aberrant activation of the Wnt signaling to growth and progression of human sarcomas. This phenomenon, mainly accomplished by autocrine loop activity, is sustained by gene amplification, over-expression of Wnt ligands and co-receptors or epigenetic silencing of endogenous Wnt antagonists. We previously showed that pharmacological inhibition of Wnt signaling mediated by Axin stabilization produced in vitro and in vivo antitumor activity in glioblastoma tumors. Here, we report that targeting different sarcoma cell lines with the Wnt inhibitor/Axin stabilizer SEN461 produces a less transformed phenotype, as supported by modulation of anchorage-independent growth in vitro. At the molecular level, SEN461 treatment enhanced the stability of the scaffold protein Axin1, a key negative regulator of the Wnt signaling with tumor suppressor function, resulting in downstream effects coherent with inhibition of canonical Wnt signaling. Genetic phenocopy of small molecule Axin stabilization, through Axin1 over-expression, coherently resulted in strong impairment of soft-agar growth. Importantly, sarcoma growth inhibition through pharmacological Axin stabilization was also observed in a xenograft model in vivo in female CD-1 nude mice. Our findings suggest the usefulness of Wnt inhibitors with Axin stabilization activity as a potentialyl clinical relevant strategy for certain types of sarcomas.

  18. New small-molecule inhibitors of dihydrofolate reductase inhibit Streptococcus mutans. (United States)

    Zhang, Qiong; Nguyen, Thao; McMichael, Megan; Velu, Sadanandan E; Zou, Jing; Zhou, Xuedong; Wu, Hui


    Streptococcus mutans is a major aetiological agent of dental caries. Formation of biofilms is a key virulence factor of S. mutans. Drugs that inhibit S. mutans biofilms may have therapeutic potential. Dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) plays a critical role in regulating the metabolism of folate. DHFR inhibitors are thus potent drugs and have been explored as anticancer and antimicrobial agents. In this study, a library of analogues based on a DHFR inhibitor, trimetrexate (TMQ), an FDA-approved drug, was screened and three new analogues that selectively inhibited S. mutans were identified. The most potent inhibitor had a 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) of 454.0±10.2nM for the biofilm and 8.7±1.9nM for DHFR of S. mutans. In contrast, the IC50 of this compound for human DHFR was ca. 1000nM, a >100-fold decrease in its potency, demonstrating the high selectivity of the analogue. An analogue that exhibited the least potency for the S. mutans biofilm also had the lowest activity towards inhibiting S. mutans DHFR, further indicating that inhibition of biofilms is related to reduced DHFR activity. These data, along with docking of the most potent analogue to the modelled DHFR structure, suggested that the TMQ analogues indeed selectively inhibited S. mutans through targeting DHFR. These potent and selective small molecules are thus promising lead compounds to develop new effective therapeutics to prevent and treat dental caries.

  19. Targeting DDX3 with a small molecule inhibitor for lung cancer therapy. (United States)

    Bol, Guus M; Vesuna, Farhad; Xie, Min; Zeng, Jing; Aziz, Khaled; Gandhi, Nishant; Levine, Anne; Irving, Ashley; Korz, Dorian; Tantravedi, Saritha; Heerma van Voss, Marise R; Gabrielson, Kathleen; Bordt, Evan A; Polster, Brian M; Cope, Leslie; van der Groep, Petra; Kondaskar, Atul; Rudek, Michelle A; Hosmane, Ramachandra S; van der Wall, Elsken; van Diest, Paul J; Tran, Phuoc T; Raman, Venu


    Lung cancer is the most common malignancy worldwide and is a focus for developing targeted therapies due to its refractory nature to current treatment. We identified a RNA helicase, DDX3, which is overexpressed in many cancer types including lung cancer and is associated with lower survival in lung cancer patients. We designed a first-in-class small molecule inhibitor, RK-33, which binds to DDX3 and abrogates its activity. Inhibition of DDX3 by RK-33 caused G1 cell cycle arrest, induced apoptosis, and promoted radiation sensitization in DDX3-overexpressing cells. Importantly, RK-33 in combination with radiation induced tumor regression in multiple mouse models of lung cancer. Mechanistically, loss of DDX3 function either by shRNA or by RK-33 impaired Wnt signaling through disruption of the DDX3-β-catenin axis and inhibited non-homologous end joining-the major DNA repair pathway in mammalian somatic cells. Overall, inhibition of DDX3 by RK-33 promotes tumor regression, thus providing a compelling argument to develop DDX3 inhibitors for lung cancer therapy.

  20. Discovery of Novel Small Molecules that Activate Satellite Cell Proliferation and Enhance Repair of Damaged Muscle. (United States)

    Billin, Andrew N; Bantscheff, Marcus; Drewes, Gerard; Ghidelli-Disse, Sonja; Holt, Jason A; Kramer, Henning F; McDougal, Alan J; Smalley, Terry L; Wells, Carrow I; Zuercher, William J; Henke, Brad R


    Skeletal muscle progenitor stem cells (referred to as satellite cells) represent the primary pool of stem cells in adult skeletal muscle responsible for the generation of new skeletal muscle in response to injury. Satellite cells derived from aged muscle display a significant reduction in regenerative capacity to form functional muscle. This decrease in functional recovery has been attributed to a decrease in proliferative capacity of satellite cells. Hence, agents that enhance the proliferative abilities of satellite cells may hold promise as therapies for a variety of pathological settings, including repair of injured muscle and age- or disease-associated muscle wasting. Through phenotypic screening of isolated murine satellite cells, we identified a series of 2,4-diaminopyrimidines (e.g., 2) that increased satellite cell proliferation. Importantly, compound 2 was effective in accelerating repair of damaged skeletal muscle in an in vivo mouse model of skeletal muscle injury. While these compounds were originally prepared as c-Jun N-terminal kinase 1 (JNK-1) inhibitors, structure-activity analyses indicated JNK-1 inhibition does not correlate with satellite cell activity. Screening against a broad panel of kinases did not result in identification of an obvious molecular target, so we conducted cell-based proteomics experiments in an attempt to identify the molecular target(s) responsible for the potentiation of the satellite cell proliferation. These data provide the foundation for future efforts to design improved small molecules as potential therapeutics for muscle repair and regeneration.

  1. The p53-reactivating small molecule RITA induces senescence in head and neck cancer cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui-Ching Chuang

    Full Text Available TP53 is the most commonly mutated gene in head and neck cancer (HNSCC, with mutations being associated with resistance to conventional therapy. Restoring normal p53 function has previously been investigated via the use of RITA (reactivation of p53 and induction of tumor cell apoptosis, a small molecule that induces a conformational change in p53, leading to activation of its downstream targets. In the current study we found that RITA indeed exerts significant effects in HNSCC cells. However, in this model, we found that a significant outcome of RITA treatment was accelerated senescence. RITA-induced senescence in a variety of p53 backgrounds, including p53 null cells. Also, inhibition of p53 expression did not appear to significantly inhibit RITA-induced senescence. Thus, this phenomenon appears to be partially p53-independent. Additionally, RITA-induced senescence appears to be partially mediated by activation of the DNA damage response and SIRT1 (Silent information regulator T1 inhibition, with a synergistic effect seen by combining either ionizing radiation or SIRT1 inhibition with RITA treatment. These data point toward a novel mechanism of RITA function as well as hint to its possible therapeutic benefit in HNSCC.

  2. Identification of small molecule aggregators from large compound libraries by support vector machines. (United States)

    Rao, Hanbing; Li, Zerong; Li, Xiangyuan; Ma, Xiaohua; Ung, Choongyong; Li, Hu; Liu, Xianghui; Chen, Yuzong


    Small molecule aggregators non-specifically inhibit multiple unrelated proteins, rendering them therapeutically useless. They frequently appear as false hits and thus need to be eliminated in high-throughput screening campaigns. Computational methods have been explored for identifying aggregators, which have not been tested in screening large compound libraries. We used 1319 aggregators and 128,325 non-aggregators to develop a support vector machines (SVM) aggregator identification model, which was tested by four methods. The first is five fold cross-validation, which showed comparable aggregator and significantly improved non-aggregator identification rates against earlier studies. The second is the independent test of 17 aggregators discovered independently from the training aggregators, 71% of which were correctly identified. The third is retrospective screening of 13M PUBCHEM and 168K MDDR compounds, which predicted 97.9% and 98.7% of the PUBCHEM and MDDR compounds as non-aggregators. The fourth is retrospective screening of 5527 MDDR compounds similar to the known aggregators, 1.14% of which were predicted as aggregators. SVM showed slightly better overall performance against two other machine learning methods based on five fold cross-validation studies of the same settings. Molecular features of aggregation, extracted by a feature selection method, are consistent with published profiles. SVM showed substantial capability in identifying aggregators from large libraries at low false-hit rates. (c) 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Functional analysis of OMICs data and small molecule compounds in an integrated "knowledge-based" platform. (United States)

    Nikolsky, Yuri; Kirillov, Eugene; Zuev, Roman; Rakhmatulin, Eugene; Nikolskaya, Tatiana


    Analysis of microarray, SNPs, proteomics, and other high-throughput (OMICs) data is challenging because of its biological complexity and high level of technical and biological noise. One way to deal with both problems is to perform analysis with a high-fidelity annotated knowledge base of protein interactions, pathways, and functional ontologies. This knowledge base has to be structured in a computer-readable format and must include software tools for managing experimental data, analysis, and reporting. Here we present MetaDiscovery, an integrated platform for functional data analysis which is being developed at GeneGo for the past 8 years. On the content side, MetaDiscovery encompasses a comprehensive database of protein interactions of different types, pathways, network models and 10 functional ontologies covering human, mouse, and rat proteins. The analytical toolkit includes tools for gene/protein list enrichment analysis, statistical "interactome" tool for identification of over- and under-connected proteins in the data set, and a network module made up of network generation algorithms and filters. The suite also features MetaSearch, an application for combinatorial search of the database content, as well as a Java-based tool called MapEditor for drawing and editing custom pathway maps. Applications of MetaDiscovery include identification of potential biomarkers and drug targets, pathway hypothesis generation, analysis of biological effects for novel small molecule compounds, and clinical applications (analysis of large cohorts of patients and translational and personalized medicine).

  4. Novel small molecule drugs inhibit tumor cell metabolism and show potent anti-tumorigenic potential

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Trojel-Hansen, Christina; Erichsen, Kamille Dumong; Christensen, Mette Knak


    BACKGROUND: Rapidly dividing tumor cells have an increased demand for nutrients to support their characteristic unabated growth; this demand is met by an increased availability of nutrients such as amino acids through vasculogenesis and by the enhanced cellular entry of nutrients through the upre......BACKGROUND: Rapidly dividing tumor cells have an increased demand for nutrients to support their characteristic unabated growth; this demand is met by an increased availability of nutrients such as amino acids through vasculogenesis and by the enhanced cellular entry of nutrients through...... the upregulation of specific transporters. Deprivation of intracellular amino acids or block of amino acid uptake has been shown to be cytotoxic to many established human cancer cell lines in vitro and in human cancer xenograft models. RESULTS: In this paper, we provide evidence that the two small molecule...... oxyphenisatine analogs TOP001 and TOP216 exert their anti-cancer effect by affecting tumor cell metabolism and inducing intracellular amino acid deprivation, leading to a block of cell proliferation. GCN2-mediated phosphorylation of eIF2α as well as mTOR pathway inhibition supports the above notion. In addition...

  5. Novel small molecule drugs inhibit tumor cell metabolism and show potent anti-tumorigenic potential

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Trojel-Hansen, Christina; Erichsen, Kamille Dumong; Christensen, Mette Knak


    BACKGROUND: Rapidly dividing tumor cells have an increased demand for nutrients to support their characteristic unabated growth; this demand is met by an increased availability of nutrients such as amino acids through vasculogenesis and by the enhanced cellular entry of nutrients through the upre......BACKGROUND: Rapidly dividing tumor cells have an increased demand for nutrients to support their characteristic unabated growth; this demand is met by an increased availability of nutrients such as amino acids through vasculogenesis and by the enhanced cellular entry of nutrients through...... the upregulation of specific transporters. Deprivation of intracellular amino acids or block of amino acid uptake has been shown to be cytotoxic to many established human cancer cell lines in vitro and in human cancer xenograft models. RESULTS: In this paper, we provide evidence that the two small molecule...... oxyphenisatine analogs TOP001 and TOP216 exert their anti-cancer effect by affecting tumor cell metabolism and inducing intracellular amino acid deprivation, leading to a block of cell proliferation. GCN2-mediated phosphorylation of eIF2a as well as mTOR pathway inhibition supports the above notion. In addition...

  6. Synthesis and Characterization of A Small Molecule CFTR Chloride Channel Inhibitor

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HE Cheng-yan; ZHANG Heng-jun; SU Zhong-min; ZHOU Jin-song; YANG Hong; MA Tong-hui


    A thiazolidinone CFTR inhibitor(CFTRinh-172) was synthesized by a three-step procedure with trifluromethylaniline as the starting material. The synthesized CFTR inhibitor was characterized structurally by means of 1H NMR and functionally in a CFTR-expressing cell line FRT/hCFTR/EYFP-H148Q by both fluorescent and electrophysiological methods. A large amount(100 g) of high-quality small molecule thiazolidinone CFTR chloride channel inhibitor, CFTRinh-172, can be produced with this simple three-step synthetic procedure. The structure of the final product 2-thioxo-3-(3-trifluromethylphenyl)-5-[4-carboxyphenyl-methylene]-4-thiazolidinone was confirmed by 1H NMR. The overall yield was 58% with a purity over 99% as analyzed by HPLC. The synthesized CFTRinh-172 specifically inhibited CFTR chloride channel function in a cell-based fluorescence assay(Kd≈1.5 μmol/L) and in a Ussing chamber-based short-circuit current assay(Kd≈0.2 μmol/L), indicating better quality than that of the commercial combinatorial compound. The synthesized inhibitor is nontoxic to cultured cells at a high concentration and to mouse at a high dose. The synthetic procedure developed here can be used to produce a large amount of the high-quality CFTRinh-172 suitable for antidiarrheal studies and for creation of cystic fibrosis models in large animals. The procedure can be used to synthesize radiolabled CFTRinh-172 for in vivo pharmacokinetics studies.

  7. A small molecule screen identifies selective inhibitors of urea transporter UT-A. (United States)

    Esteva-Font, Cristina; Phuan, Puay-Wah; Anderson, Marc O; Verkman, A S


    Urea transporter (UT) proteins, including UT-A in kidney tubule epithelia and UT-B in vasa recta microvessels, facilitate urinary concentrating function. A screen for UT-A inhibitors was developed in MDCK cells expressing UT-A1, water channel aquaporin-1, and YFP-H148Q/V163S. An inwardly directed urea gradient produces cell shrinking followed by UT-A1-dependent swelling, which was monitored by YFP-H148Q/V163S fluorescence. Screening of ~90,000 synthetic small molecules yielded four classes of UT-A1 inhibitors with low micromolar half-maximal inhibitory concentration that fully and reversibly inhibited urea transport by a noncompetitive mechanism. Structure-activity analysis of >400 analogs revealed UT-A1-selective and UT-A1/UT-B nonselective inhibitors. Docking computations based on homology models of UT-A1 suggested inhibitor binding sites. UT-A inhibitors may be useful as diuretics ("urearetics") with a mechanism of action that may be effective in fluid-retaining conditions in which conventional salt transport-blocking diuretics have limited efficacy.

  8. Recent Developments in the Use of Differential Scanning Fluorometry in Protein and Small Molecule Discovery and Characterization (United States)

    Simeonov, Anton


    Introduction Despite tremendous advances in the application of biophysical methods in drug discovery, the preponderance of instruments and techniques still require sophisticated analyses by dedicated personnel and/or large amounts of frequently hard-to-produce proteins. A technique which carries the promise of simplicity and relatively low protein consumption is the differential scanning fluorometry (DSF), wherein protein denaturation is monitored, through the use of environmentally sensitive fluorescent dye, in a temperature-ramp regime by observing the gradual exposure to the solvent of otherwise buried hydrophobic faces of protein domains. Areas covered This review describes recent developments in the field, with a special emphasis on advances published during the 2010–2013 period. Expert Opinion There has been a significant diversification of DSF applications beyond initial small molecule discovery into areas such as protein therapeutic development, formulation studies, and various mechanistic investigations, serving as a further indication of the broad penetration of the technique. In the small molecule arena, DSF has expanded towards sophisticated co-dependency MOA tests, demonstrating the wealth of information which the technique can provide. Importantly, the first public deposition of a large screening dataset may enable the use of thermal stabilization data in refining in silico models for small molecule binding. PMID:23738712

  9. Molecular locks and keys: the role of small molecules in phytohormone research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra eFonseca


    Full Text Available Plant adaptation, growth and development rely on the integration of many environmental and endogenous signals that collectively determine the overall plant phenotypic plasticity. Plant signalling molecules, also known as phytohormones, are fundamental to this process. These molecules act at low concentrations and regulate multiple aspects of plant fitness and development via complex signalling networks. By its nature, phytohormone research lies at the interface between chemistry and biology. Classically, the scientific community has always used synthetic phytohormones and analogs to study hormone functions and responses. However, recent advances in synthetic and combinational chemistry, have allowed a new field, plant chemical biology, to emerge and this has provided a powerful tool with which to study phytohormone function.Plant chemical biology is helping to address some of the most enduring questions in phytohormone research such as: Are there still undiscovered plant hormones? How can we identify novel signalling molecules? How can plants activate specific hormone responses in a tissue-specific manner? How can we modulate hormone responses in one developmental context without inducing detrimental effects on other processes? The chemical genomics approaches rely on the identification of small molecules modulating different biological processes and have recently identified active forms of plant hormones and molecules regulating many aspects of hormone synthesis, transport and response. We envision that the field of chemical genomics will continue to provide novel molecules able to elucidate specific aspects of hormone-mediated responses. In addition, compounds blocking specific responses could uncover how complex biological responses are regulated. As we gain information about such compounds we can design small alterations to the chemical structure to further alter specificity, enhance affinity or modulate the activity of these compounds.

  10. Molecular locks and keys: the role of small molecules in phytohormone research. (United States)

    Fonseca, Sandra; Rosado, Abel; Vaughan-Hirsch, John; Bishopp, Anthony; Chini, Andrea


    Plant adaptation, growth and development rely on the integration of many environmental and endogenous signals that collectively determine the overall plant phenotypic plasticity. Plant signaling molecules, also known as phytohormones, are fundamental to this process. These molecules act at low concentrations and regulate multiple aspects of plant fitness and development via complex signaling networks. By its nature, phytohormone research lies at the interface between chemistry and biology. Classically, the scientific community has always used synthetic phytohormones and analogs to study hormone functions and responses. However, recent advances in synthetic and combinational chemistry, have allowed a new field, plant chemical biology, to emerge and this has provided a powerful tool with which to study phytohormone function. Plant chemical biology is helping to address some of the most enduring questions in phytohormone research such as: Are there still undiscovered plant hormones? How can we identify novel signaling molecules? How can plants activate specific hormone responses in a tissue-specific manner? How can we modulate hormone responses in one developmental context without inducing detrimental effects on other processes? The chemical genomics approaches rely on the identification of small molecules modulating different biological processes and have recently identified active forms of plant hormones and molecules regulating many aspects of hormone synthesis, transport and response. We envision that the field of chemical genomics will continue to provide novel molecules able to elucidate specific aspects of hormone-mediated mechanisms. In addition, compounds blocking specific responses could uncover how complex biological responses are regulated. As we gain information about such compounds we can design small alterations to the chemical structure to further alter specificity, enhance affinity or modulate the activity of these compounds.

  11. Small-molecule inhibitor leads of ribosome-inactivating proteins developed using the doorstop approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan-Ping Pang

    Full Text Available Ribosome-inactivating proteins (RIPs are toxic because they bind to 28S rRNA and depurinate a specific adenine residue from the α-sarcin/ricin loop (SRL, thereby inhibiting protein synthesis. Shiga-like toxins (Stx1 and Stx2, produced by Escherichia coli, are RIPs that cause outbreaks of foodborne diseases with significant morbidity and mortality. Ricin, produced by the castor bean plant, is another RIP lethal to mammals. Currently, no US Food and Drug Administration-approved vaccines nor therapeutics exist to protect against ricin, Shiga-like toxins, or other RIPs. Development of effective small-molecule RIP inhibitors as therapeutics is challenging because strong electrostatic interactions at the RIP•SRL interface make drug-like molecules ineffective in competing with the rRNA for binding to RIPs. Herein, we report small molecules that show up to 20% cell protection against ricin or Stx2 at a drug concentration of 300 nM. These molecules were discovered using the doorstop approach, a new approach to protein•polynucleotide inhibitors that identifies small molecules as doorstops to prevent an active-site residue of an RIP (e.g., Tyr80 of ricin or Tyr77 of Stx2 from adopting an active conformation thereby blocking the function of the protein rather than contenders in the competition for binding to the RIP. This work offers promising leads for developing RIP therapeutics. The results suggest that the doorstop approach might also be applicable in the development of other protein•polynucleotide inhibitors as antiviral agents such as inhibitors of the Z-DNA binding proteins in poxviruses. This work also calls for careful chemical and biological characterization of drug leads obtained from chemical screens to avoid the identification of irrelevant chemical structures and to avoid the interference caused by direct interactions between the chemicals being screened and the luciferase reporter used in screening assays.

  12. Considerable improvement in the stability of solution processed small molecule OLED by annealing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mao Guilin [Key Laboratory of Photonics Technology for Information, Key Laboratory for Physical Electronics and Devices of the Ministry of Education, School of Electronic and Information Engineering, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an, 710049 (China); Wu Zhaoxin, E-mail: [Key Laboratory of Photonics Technology for Information, Key Laboratory for Physical Electronics and Devices of the Ministry of Education, School of Electronic and Information Engineering, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an, 710049 (China); He Qiang [Key Laboratory of Photonics Technology for Information, Key Laboratory for Physical Electronics and Devices of the Ministry of Education, School of Electronic and Information Engineering, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an, 710049 (China); Department of UAV, Wuhan Ordnance Noncommissioned Officers Academy, Wuhan, 430075 (China); Jiao Bo; Xu Guojin; Hou Xun [Key Laboratory of Photonics Technology for Information, Key Laboratory for Physical Electronics and Devices of the Ministry of Education, School of Electronic and Information Engineering, Xi' an Jiaotong University, Xi' an, 710049 (China); Chen Zhijian; Gong Qihuang [State Key Laboratory for Mesoscopic Physics and Department of Physics, Peking University, Beijing, 100871 (China)


    We investigated the annealing effect on solution processed small organic molecule organic films, which were annealed with various conditions. It was found that the densities of the spin-coated (SC) films increased and the surface roughness decreased as the annealing temperature rose. We fabricated corresponding organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) by spin coating on the same annealing conditions. The solution processed OLEDs show the considerable efficiency and stability, which were prior or equivalent to the vacuum-deposited (VD) counterparts. Our research shows that annealing process plays a key role in prolonging the lifetime of solution processed small molecule OLEDs, and the mechanism for the improvement of the device performance upon annealing was also discussed.

  13. Exploiting Transient Protein States for the Design of Small-Molecule Stabilizers of Mutant p53 (United States)

    Joerger, Andreas C.; Bauer, Matthias R.; Wilcken, Rainer; Baud, Matthias G.J.; Harbrecht, Hannes; Exner, Thomas E.; Boeckler, Frank M.; Spencer, John; Fersht, Alan R.


    Summary The destabilizing p53 cancer mutation Y220C creates an extended crevice on the surface of the protein that can be targeted by small-molecule stabilizers. Here, we identify different classes of small molecules that bind to this crevice and determine their binding modes by X-ray crystallography. These structures reveal two major conformational states of the pocket and a cryptic, transiently open hydrophobic subpocket that is modulated by Cys220. In one instance, specifically targeting this transient protein state by a pyrrole moiety resulted in a 40-fold increase in binding affinity. Molecular dynamics simulations showed that both open and closed states of this subsite were populated at comparable frequencies along the trajectories. Our data extend the framework for the design of high-affinity Y220C mutant binders for use in personalized anticancer therapy and, more generally, highlight the importance of implementing protein dynamics and hydration patterns in the drug-discovery process. PMID:26636255

  14. Inhibition of Protein-Protein Interactions and Signaling by Small Molecules (United States)

    Freire, Ernesto


    Protein-protein interactions are at the core of cell signaling pathways as well as many bacterial and viral infection processes. As such, they define critical targets for drug development against diseases such as cancer, arthritis, obesity, AIDS and many others. Until now, the clinical inhibition of protein-protein interactions and signaling has been accomplished with the use of antibodies or soluble versions of receptor molecules. Small molecule replacements of these therapeutic agents have been extremely difficult to develop; either the necessary potency has been hard to achieve or the expected biological effect has not been obtained. In this presentation, we show that a rigorous thermodynamic approach that combines differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) provides a unique platform for the identification and optimization of small molecular weight inhibitors of protein-protein interactions. Recent advances in the development of cell entry inhibitors of HIV-1 using this approach will be discussed.

  15. Radiolabeled Small Molecule Protein Kinase Inhibitors for Imaging with PET or SPECT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justin W. Hicks


    Full Text Available Imaging protein kinase expression with radiolabeled small molecule inhibitors has been actively pursued to monitor the clinical potential of targeted therapeutics and treatments as well as to determine kinase receptor density changes related to disease progression. The goal of the present review is to provide an overview of the breadth of radiolabeled small molecules that have been synthesized to target intracellular protein kinases, not only for imaging in oncology, but also for other areas of interest, particularly the central nervous system.  Considerable radiotracer development has focused on imaging receptor tyrosine kinases of growth factors, protein kinases A, B and C, and glycogen synthase kinase–3β. Design considerations, structural attributes and relevant biological results are summarized.

  16. UP-scaling of inverted small molecule based organic solar cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Patil, Bhushan Ramesh; Madsen, Morten

    Organic solar cells (OSC), in spite of being a promising technology, still face challenges regarding large-scale fabrication. Although efficiencies of up to 12 % has been reached for small molecule OSC, their performance, both in terms of device efficiency and stability, is significantly reduced...... during up-scaling processes. The work presented here is focused on an approach towards up-scaling of small molecule based OSC with inverted device configuration. Bilayer OSC from Tetraphenyldibenzoperiflanthene (DBP) and Fullerenes (C70), as electron donor and acceptor respectively, with cell area...... ranging on a scale from a few mm2 to cm2, are produced by organic molecular beam deposition (OMBD). All the layers in the device are fabricated from a highly sophisticated vacuum cluster deposition system that includes electrode, interfacial layer and organic layer deposition in one high-vacuum deposition...

  17. A DNA-Mediated Homogeneous Binding Assay for Proteins and Small Molecules

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Zhao; Hejesen, Christian; Kjelstrup, Michael Brøndum


    Optical detection of molecular targets typically requires immobilization, separation, or chemical or enzymatic processing. An important exception is aptamers that allow optical detection in solution based on conformational changes. This method, however, requires the laborious selection of aptamers...... with high target specificity and affinity, and the ability to undergo the required conformational changes. Here we report on an alternative generic scheme for detecting small molecules and proteins in solution based on a shift in the equilibrium of DNA-based strand displacement competition reaction....... The shift occurs upon binding of a protein, for example, an antibody to its target. We demonstrate nanomolar detection of small molecules such as biotin, digoxigenin, vitamin D, and folate, in buffer and in plasma. The method is flexible, and we also show nanomolar detection of the respective antibodies...

  18. A philicity based analysis of adsorption of small molecules in zeolites

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Angeles Cáun; Marcelo Galván; Pratim Kumar Chattaraj


    Adsorption of small molecules like CH4, CO and NH3 into the acid sites of zeolites is analysed as an interaction between an electrophile and a nucleophile. Global reactivity descriptors like softness and electrophilicity, and local reactivity descriptors like the Fukui function, local softness and local philicity are calculated within density functional as well as Hartree-Fock frameworks using both Mulliken and Hirshfeld population analysis schemes. The HSAB principle and the best electrophilenucleophile combination suggest that the reaction between the NH3 and Brönsted acid site of the zeolite is the strongest. Interaction between the zeolite and a small probe molecule takes place through the most electrophilic atom of one with the most nucleophilic atom of the other. This result is in conformity with those provided by the frontier orbital theory and the local HSAB principle.

  19. Blu-ray based optomagnetic aptasensor for detection of small molecules

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Jaeyoung; Donolato, Marco; Pinto, Alessandro


    This paper describes an aptamer-based optomagnetic biosensor for detection of a small molecule based on target binding-induced inhibition of magnetic nanoparticle (MNP) clustering. For the detection of a target small molecule, two mutually exclusive binding reactions (aptamer-target binding...... and aptamer-DNA linker hybridization) are designed. An aptamer specific to the target and a DNA linker complementary to a part of the aptamer sequence are immobilized onto separate MNPs. Hybridization of the DNA linker and the aptamer induces formation of MNP clusters. The target-to-aptamer binding on MNPs...... prior to the addition of linker-functionalized MNPs significantly hinders the hybridization reaction, thus reducing the degree of MNP clustering. The clustering state, which is thus related to the target concentration, is then quantitatively determined by an optomagnetic readout technique that provides...

  20. Clinical grade iPS cells: need for versatile small molecules and optimal cell sources. (United States)

    Wu, Yan-Ling; Pandian, Ganesh N; Ding, Yan-Ping; Zhang, Wen; Tanaka, Yoshimasa; Sugiyama, Hiroshi


    Adult mammals possess limited ability to regenerate their lost tissues or organs. The epoch-making strategy of inducing pluripotency in somatic cells incorporates multiple applications in regenerative medicine. However, concerns about the clinical translation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells still exist because of the occurrence of aberrancies, even in genome integration-free methods. As cellular reprogramming is multi-gene-oriented, versatile, bioactive small molecules could concomitantly modulate the transcriptional machinery and aid the generation of clinical grade iPS cells. The availability of optimal cell sources has additional influence on the clinical translation of iPS cells. Herein we provide a critical overview of methods and cell sources available for iPS cell production. We think the review will be a useful resource for researchers who aim to develop small molecules for speeding up the journey of iPS cells from the laboratory to the clinic.

  1. Correlating Molecular Structures with Transport Dynamics in High-Efficiency Small-Molecule Organic Photovoltaics. (United States)

    Peng, Jiajun; Chen, Yani; Wu, Xiaohan; Zhang, Qian; Kan, Bin; Chen, Xiaoqing; Chen, Yongsheng; Huang, Jia; Liang, Ziqi


    Efficient charge transport is a key step toward high efficiency in small-molecule organic photovoltaics. Here we applied time-of-flight and organic field-effect transistor to complementarily study the influences of molecular structure, trap states, and molecular orientation on charge transport of small-molecule DRCN7T (D1) and its analogue DERHD7T (D2). It is revealed that, despite the subtle difference of the chemical structures, D1 exhibits higher charge mobility, the absence of shallow traps, and better photosensitivity than D2. Moreover, charge transport is favored in the out-of-plane structure within D1-based organic solar cells, while D2 prefers in-plane charge transport.

  2. Remote control of therapeutic T cells through a small molecule-gated chimeric receptor. (United States)

    Wu, Chia-Yung; Roybal, Kole T; Puchner, Elias M; Onuffer, James; Lim, Wendell A


    There is growing interest in using engineered cells as therapeutic agents. For example, synthetic chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) can redirect T cells to recognize and eliminate tumor cells expressing specific antigens. Despite promising clinical results, these engineered T cells can exhibit excessive activity that is difficult to control and can cause severe toxicity. We designed "ON-switch" CARs that enable small-molecule control over T cell therapeutic functions while still retaining antigen specificity. In these split receptors, antigen-binding and intracellular signaling components assemble only in the presence of a heterodimerizing small molecule. This titratable pharmacologic regulation could allow physicians to precisely control the timing, location, and dosage of T cell activity, thereby mitigating toxicity. This work illustrates the potential of combining cellular engineering with orthogonal chemical tools to yield safer therapeutic cells that tightly integrate cell-autonomous recognition and user control.

  3. Growth factor and small molecule influence on urological tissue regeneration utilizing cell seeded scaffolds. (United States)

    Sharma, Arun K; Cheng, Earl Y


    Regenerative medicine strategies combine various attributes from multiple disciplines including stem cell biology, chemistry, materials science and medicine. The junction at which these disciplines intersect provides a means to address unmet medical needs in an assortment of pathologies with the goal of creating sustainable, functional replacement tissues. Tissue damage caused by trauma for example, requires rapid responses in order to mitigate further tissue deterioration. Cell/scaffold composites have been utilized to initiate and stabilize regenerative responses in vivo with the hope that functional tissue can be attained. Along with the gross reconfiguration of regenerating tissues, small molecules and growth factors also play a pivotal role in tissue regeneration. Several regenerative studies targeting a variety of urological tissues demonstrate the utility of these small molecules or growth factors in an in vivo setting.

  4. STITCH 2: an interaction network database for small molecules and proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kuhn, Michael; Szklarczyk, Damian; Franceschini, Andrea


    Over the last years, the publicly available knowledge on interactions between small molecules and proteins has been steadily increasing. To create a network of interactions, STITCH aims to integrate the data dispersed over the literature and various databases of biological pathways, drug-target r......Over the last years, the publicly available knowledge on interactions between small molecules and proteins has been steadily increasing. To create a network of interactions, STITCH aims to integrate the data dispersed over the literature and various databases of biological pathways, drug......-target relationships and binding affinities. In STITCH 2, the number of relevant interactions is increased by incorporation of BindingDB, PharmGKB and the Comparative Toxicogenomics Database. The resulting network can be explored interactively or used as the basis for large-scale analyses. To facilitate links to other...

  5. Bifunctional Pt-Si Alloys for Small Organic Molecule Electro-oxidation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Permyakova, Anastasia Aleksandrovna; Suntivich, Jin; Han, Binghong

    Designing highly active catalysts for electro-oxidation of small organic molecules can help to reduce the anodic overpotential for more efficient utilization of hydrocarbon fuels. The challenge in developing more active electrocatalysts for electro-oxidation reactions is to satisfy the stringent...... bifunctional requirement, which demands both adsorption and water oxidation sites. In this contribution, we explore the possibility of using Pt-Si alloys to fulfill this bifunctional requirement. Silicon, a highly oxophillic element, is alloyed into Pt as a site for water oxidation, while Pt serves as a CO...... adsorption site. We will discuss the enhanced activity of Pt-Si alloys for small organic molecule oxidation, which can be attributed to the improved CO electro-oxidation kinetics on Pt-Si....

  6. Organic Small Molecule as the Underlayer Toward High Performance Planar Perovskite Solar Cells. (United States)

    Cong, Shan; Yang, Hao; Lou, Yanhui; Han, Liang; Yi, Qinghua; Wang, Haibo; Sun, Yinghui; Zou, Guifu


    The underlayer plays an important role for organic-inorganic hybrid perovskite formation and charge transport in perovskite solar cells (PSCs). Here, we employ a classical organic small molecule, 5,6,11,12-tetraphenyltetracene (rubrene), as the underlayer of perovskite films to achieve 15.83% of power conversion efficiency with remarkable moisture tolerance exposed to the atmosphere. Experiments demonstrate rubrene hydrophobic underlayer not only drives the crystalline grain growth of high quality perovskite, but also contributes to the moisture tolerance of PSCs. Moreover, the matching energy level of the desirable underlayer is conductive to extracting holes and blocking electrons at anode in PSCs. This introduction of organic small molecule into PSCs provides alternative materials for interface optimization, as well as platform for flexible and wearable solar cells.

  7. Remote control of therapeutic T cells through a small molecule-gated chimeric receptor (United States)

    Wu, Chia-Yung; Roybal, Kole T.; Puchner, Elias M.; Onuffer, James; Lim, Wendell A.


    There is growing promise in using engineered cells as therapeutic agents. For example, synthetic Chimeric Antigen Receptors (CARs) can redirect T cells to recognize and eliminate tumor cells expressing specific antigens. Despite promising clinical results, excessive activity and poor control over such engineered T cells can cause severe toxicities. We present the design of “ON-switch” CARs that enable small molecule-control over T cell therapeutic functions, while still retaining antigen specificity. In these split receptors, antigen binding and intracellular signaling components only assemble in the presence of a heterodimerizing small molecule. This titratable pharmacologic regulation could allow physicians to precisely control the timing, location, and dosage of T cell activity, thereby mitigating toxicity. This work illustrates the potential of combining cellular engineering with orthogonal chemical tools to yield safer therapeutic cells that tightly integrate both cell autonomous recognition and user control. PMID:26405231

  8. Discovery and characterization of small molecule inhibitors of the BET family bromodomains. (United States)

    Chung, Chun-Wa; Coste, Herve; White, Julia H; Mirguet, Olivier; Wilde, Jonathan; Gosmini, Romain L; Delves, Chris; Magny, Sylvie M; Woodward, Robert; Hughes, Stephen A; Boursier, Eric V; Flynn, Helen; Bouillot, Anne M; Bamborough, Paul; Brusq, Jean-Marie G; Gellibert, Francoise J; Jones, Emma J; Riou, Alizon M; Homes, Paul; Martin, Sandrine L; Uings, Iain J; Toum, Jerome; Clement, Catherine A; Boullay, Anne-Benedicte; Grimley, Rachel L; Blandel, Florence M; Prinjha, Rab K; Lee, Kevin; Kirilovsky, Jorge; Nicodeme, Edwige


    Epigenetic mechanisms of gene regulation have a profound role in normal development and disease processes. An integral part of this mechanism occurs through lysine acetylation of histone tails which are recognized by bromodomains. While the biological and structural characterization of many bromodomain containing proteins has advanced considerably, the therapeutic tractability of this protein family is only now becoming understood. This paper describes the discovery and molecular characterization of potent (nM) small molecule inhibitors that disrupt the function of the BET family of bromodomains (Brd2, Brd3, and Brd4). By using a combination of phenotypic screening, chemoproteomics, and biophysical studies, we have discovered that the protein-protein interactions between bromodomains and acetylated histones can be antagonized by selective small molecules that bind at the acetylated lysine recognition pocket. X-ray crystal structures of compounds bound into bromodomains of Brd2 and Brd4 elucidate the molecular interactions of binding and explain the precisely defined stereochemistry required for activity.

  9. Influence of Electrostatics on Small Molecule Flux through a Protein Nanoreactor. (United States)

    Glasgow, Jeff E; Asensio, Michael A; Jakobson, Christopher M; Francis, Matthew B; Tullman-Ercek, Danielle


    Nature uses protein compartmentalization to great effect for control over enzymatic pathways, and the strategy has great promise for synthetic biology. In particular, encapsulation in nanometer-sized containers to create nanoreactors has the potential to elicit interesting, unexplored effects resulting from deviations from well-understood bulk processes. Self-assembled protein shells for encapsulation are especially desirable for their uniform structures and ease of perturbation through genetic mutation. Here, we use the MS2 capsid, a well-defined porous 27 nm protein shell, as an enzymatic nanoreactor to explore pore-structure effects on substrate and product flux during the catalyzed reaction. Our results suggest that the shell can influence the enzymatic reaction based on charge repulsion between small molecules and point mutations around the pore structure. These findings also lend support to the hypothesis that protein compartments modulate the transport of small molecules and thus influence metabolic reactions and catalysis in vitro.

  10. RNA targeting by small molecules: Binding of protoberberine, benzophenanthridine and aristolochia alkaloids to various RNA structures

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Gopinatha Suresh Kumar


    Studies on RNA targeting by small molecules to specifically control certain cellular functions is an area of remarkable current interest. For this purpose, a basic understanding of the molecular aspects of the interaction of small molecules with various RNA structures is essential. Alkaloids are a group of natural products with potential therapeutic utility, and very recently, their interaction with many RNA structures have been reported. Especially noteworthy are the protoberberines and aristolochia alkaloids distributed widely in many botanical families. Many of the alkaloids of these group exhibit excellent binding affinity to many RNA structures that may be exploited to develop RNA targeted therapeutics. This review attempts to present the current status on the understanding of the interaction of these alkaloids with various RNA structures, mainly highlighting the biophysical aspects.

  11. Structure-based DNA-targeting strategies with small molecule ligands for drug discovery. (United States)

    Sheng, Jia; Gan, Jianhua; Huang, Zhen


    Nucleic acids are the molecular targets of many clinical anticancer drugs. However, compared with proteins, nucleic acids have traditionally attracted much less attention as drug targets in structure-based drug design, partially because limited structural information of nucleic acids complexed with potential drugs is available. Over the past several years, enormous progresses in nucleic acid crystallization, heavy-atom derivatization, phasing, and structural biology have been made. Many complicated nucleic acid structures have been determined, providing new insights into the molecular functions and interactions of nucleic acids, especially DNAs complexed with small molecule ligands. Thus, opportunities have been created to further discover nucleic acid-targeting drugs for disease treatments. This review focuses on the structure studies of DNAs complexed with small molecule ligands for discovering lead compounds, drug candidates, and/or therapeutics.

  12. Small Molecule-Photoactive Yellow Protein Labeling Technology in Live Cell Imaging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Gao


    Full Text Available Characterization of the chemical environment, movement, trafficking and interactions of proteins in live cells is essential to understanding their functions. Labeling protein with functional molecules is a widely used approach in protein research to elucidate the protein location and functions both in vitro and in live cells or in vivo. A peptide or a protein tag fused to the protein of interest and provides the opportunities for an attachment of small molecule probes or other fluorophore to image the dynamics of protein localization. Here we reviewed the recent development of no-wash small molecular probes for photoactive yellow protein (PYP-tag, by the means of utilizing a quenching mechanism based on the intramolecular interactions, or an environmental-sensitive fluorophore. Several fluorogenic probes have been developed, with fast labeling kinetics and cell permeability. This technology allows quick live-cell imaging of cell-surface and intracellular proteins without a wash-out procedure.

  13. Cyclopentadithiophene organic core in small molecule organic solar cells: morphological control of carrier recombination. (United States)

    Domínguez, Rocío; Montcada, Núria F; de la Cruz, Pilar; Palomares, Emilio; Langa, Fernando


    Two new planar and symmetrical A-D-A (electron acceptor-electron donor-electron acceptor) small molecules based on a commercial cyclopentadithiophene derivative have been synthesized for solution processed small molecule organic solar cells. The aim was to synthesise the molecules to be energetically identical (similar HOMO-LUMO energy levels) in order to assign the differences observed to changes in the film morphology or to differences in the interfacial recombination kinetics or both. Devices were electrically characterized under one sun simulated (1.5 AM G) conditions by determining current-voltage curves, light harvesting efficiencies and external quantum efficiencies. Moreover, time-resolved photo-induced techniques such as photo-induced charge extraction and photo-induced transient photo-voltage were also performed. The results demonstrate that, despite having the same core, i.e. cyclopentadithiophene, the use of one hexyl chain instead of two in the organic molecule leads to a greater control of the molecular ordering using solvent vapour annealing techniques and also to better solar cell efficiency.

  14. Small Molecule Inhibitors of Bcl-2 Family Proteins for Pancreatic Cancer Therapy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Masood, Ashiq [Department of Internal Medicine/Pathology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University, 4100 John R, HWCRC 732, Detroit, MI 48201 (United States); Azmi, Asfar S. [Department of Pathology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University, 4100 John R, HWCRC 732, Detroit MI 48201 (United States); Mohammad, Ramzi M., E-mail: [Department of Internal Medicine/Pathology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University, 4100 John R, HWCRC 732, Detroit, MI 48201 (United States); Department of Oncology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, 4100 John R, HWCRC 732, Detroit, MI 48201 (United States)


    Pancreatic cancer (PC) has a complex etiology and displays a wide range of cellular escape pathways that allow it to resist different treatment modalities. Crucial signaling molecules that function downstream of the survival pathways, particularly at points where several of these pathways crosstalk, provide valuable targets for the development of novel anti-cancer drugs. Bcl-2 family member proteins are anti-apoptotic molecules that are known to be overexpressed in most cancers including PC. The anti-apoptotic machinery has been linked to the observed resistance developed to chemotherapy and radiation and therefore is important from the targeted drug development point of view. Over the past ten years, our group has extensively studied a series of small molecule inhibitors of Bcl-2 against PC and provide solid preclinical platform for testing such novel drugs in the clinic. This review examines the efficacy, potency, and function of several small molecule inhibitor drugs targeted to the Bcl-2 family of proteins and their preclinical progress against PC. This article further focuses on compounds that have been studied the most and also discusses the anti-cancer potential of newer class of Bcl-2 drugs.

  15. Using NMR to study small molecule adsorption in metal organic frameworks (United States)

    Lopez, M. G.; Canepa, P.; Thonhauser, T.


    We calculate the carbon nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) chemical shift for the CO2 molecule and the hydrogen shift for both H2 and H2O inside the metal organic framework structure Mg-MOF74 using ab initio calculations at the density functional theory level[1,2] with the van der Waals density functional (vdW-DF).[3] These shifts are obtained while placing the small molecules throughout the structure, including the calculated adsorption site for various loading scenarios. Our binding energy results agree well with previous experiments and calculation, and the NMR calculations show that it is reasonable to expect an experimentally observable change in the chemical shift depending on adsorbant, position, and loading. By providing this mapping of chemical shift to position and loading for these adsorbants, we argue that NMR probes could be used to provide information about the position at which these small molecules bind within the MOF and provide information about the loading of the adsorbed molecule.

  16. Biomarkers for Tuberculosis Based on Secreted, Species-Specific, Bacterial Small Molecules. (United States)

    Pan, Shih-Jung; Tapley, Asa; Adamson, John; Little, Tessa; Urbanowski, Michael; Cohen, Keira; Pym, Alexander; Almeida, Deepak; Dorasamy, Afton; Layre, Emilie; Young, David C; Singh, Ravesh; Patel, Vinod B; Wallengren, Kristina; Ndung'u, Thumbi; Wilson, Douglas; Moody, D Branch; Bishai, William


    Improved biomarkers are needed for tuberculosis. To develop tests based on products secreted by tubercle bacilli that are strictly associated with viability, we evaluated 3 bacterial-derived, species-specific, small molecules as biomarkers: 2 mycobactin siderophores and tuberculosinyladenosine. Using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry, we demonstrated the presence of 1 or both mycobactins and/or tuberculosinyladenosine in serum and whole lung tissues from infected mice and sputum, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), or lymph nodes from infected patients but not uninfected controls. Detection of the target molecules distinguished host infection status in 100% of mice with both serum and lung as the target sample. In human subjects, we evaluated detection of the bacterial small molecules (BSMs) in multiple body compartments in 3 patient cohorts corresponding to different forms of tuberculosis. We detected at least 1 of the 3 molecules in 90%, 71%, and 40% of tuberculosis patients' sputum, CSF, and lymph node samples, respectively. In paucibacillary forms of human tuberculosis, which are difficult to diagnose even with culture, detection of 1 or more BSM was rapid and compared favorably to polymerase chain reaction-based detection. Secreted BSMs, detectable in serum, warrant further investigation as a means for diagnosis and therapeutic monitoring in patients with tuberculosis.

  17. DEPTH: a web server to compute depth and predict small-molecule binding cavities in proteins. (United States)

    Tan, Kuan Pern; Varadarajan, Raghavan; Madhusudhan, M S


    Depth measures the extent of atom/residue burial within a protein. It correlates with properties such as protein stability, hydrogen exchange rate, protein-protein interaction hot spots, post-translational modification sites and sequence variability. Our server, DEPTH, accurately computes depth and solvent-accessible surface area (SASA) values. We show that depth can be used to predict small molecule ligand binding cavities in proteins. Often, some of the residues lining a ligand binding cavity are both deep and solvent exposed. Using the depth-SASA pair values for a residue, its likelihood to form part of a small molecule binding cavity is estimated. The parameters of the method were calibrated over a training set of 900 high-resolution X-ray crystal structures of single-domain proteins bound to small molecules (molecular weight structures. Users have the option of tuning several parameters to detect cavities of different sizes, for example, geometrically flat binding sites. The input to the server is a protein 3D structure in PDB format. The users have the option of tuning the values of four parameters associated with the computation of residue depth and the prediction of binding cavities. The computed depths, SASA and binding cavity predictions are displayed in 2D plots and mapped onto 3D representations of the protein structure using Jmol. Links are provided to download the outputs. Our server is useful for all structural analysis based on residue depth and SASA, such as guiding site-directed mutagenesis experiments and small molecule docking exercises, in the context of protein functional annotation and drug discovery.

  18. Identification of small molecule binding sites within proteins using phage display technology.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rodi, D. J.; Agoston, G. E.; Manon, R.; Lapcevich, R.; Green, S. J.; Makowski, L.; Biosciences Division; EntreMed Inc.; Florida State Univ.


    Affinity selection of peptides displayed on phage particles was used as the basis for mapping molecular contacts between small molecule ligands and their protein targets. Analysis of the crystal structures of complexes between proteins and small molecule ligands revealed that virtually all ligands of molecular weight 300 Da or greater have a continuous binding epitope of 5 residues or more. This observation led to the development of a technique for binding site identification which involves statistical analysis of an affinity-selected set of peptides obtained by screening of libraries of random, phage-displayed peptides against small molecules attached to solid surfaces. A random sample of the selected peptides is sequenced and used as input for a similarity scanning program which calculates cumulative similarity scores along the length of the putative receptor. Regions of the protein sequence exhibiting the highest similarity with the selected peptides proved to have a high probability of being involved in ligand binding. This technique has been employed successfully to map the contact residues in multiple known targets of the anticancer drugs paclitaxel (Taxol), docetaxel (Taxotere) and 2-methoxyestradiol and the glycosaminoglycan hyaluronan, and to identify a novel paclitaxel receptor [1]. These data corroborate the observation that the binding properties of peptides displayed on the surface of phage particles can mimic the binding properties of peptides in naturally occurring proteins. It follows directly that structural context is relatively unimportant for determining the binding properties of these disordered peptides. This technique represents a novel, rapid, high resolution method for identifying potential ligand binding sites in the absence of three-dimensional information and has the potential to greatly enhance the speed of development of novel small molecule pharmaceuticals.

  19. An unbiased cell morphology-based screen for new, biologically active small molecules.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masahiro Tanaka


    Full Text Available We have implemented an unbiased cell morphology-based screen to identify small-molecule modulators of cellular processes using the Cytometrix (TM automated imaging and analysis system. This assay format provides unbiased analysis of morphological effects induced by small molecules by capturing phenotypic readouts of most known classes of pharmacological agents and has the potential to read out pathways for which little is known. Four human-cancer cell lines and one noncancerous primary cell type were treated with 107 small molecules comprising four different protein kinase-inhibitor scaffolds. Cellular phenotypes induced by each compound were quantified by multivariate statistical analysis of the morphology, staining intensity, and spatial attributes of the cellular nuclei, microtubules, and Golgi compartments. Principal component analysis was used to identify inhibitors of cellular components not targeted by known protein kinase inhibitors. Here we focus on a hydroxyl-substituted analog (hydroxy-PP of the known Src-family kinase inhibitor PP2 because it induced cell-specific morphological features distinct from all known kinase inhibitors in the collection. We used affinity purification to identify a target of hydroxy-PP, carbonyl reductase 1 (CBR1, a short-chain dehydrogenase-reductase. We solved the X-ray crystal structure of the CBR1/hydroxy-PP complex to 1.24 A resolution. Structure-based design of more potent and selective CBR1 inhibitors provided probes for analyzing the biological function of CBR1 in A549 cells. These studies revealed a previously unknown function for CBR1 in serum-withdrawal-induced apoptosis. Further studies indicate CBR1 inhibitors may enhance the effectiveness of anticancer anthracyclines. Morphology-based screening of diverse cancer cell types has provided a method for discovering potent new small-molecule probes for cell biological studies and anticancer drug candidates.

  20. Recent development of ATP-competitive small molecule phosphatidylinostitol-3-kinase inhibitors as anticancer agents (United States)

    Liu, Yu; Wan, Wen-zhu; Li, Yan; Zhou, Guan-lian; Liu, Xin-guang


    Phosphatidylinostitol-3-kinase (PI3K) is the potential anticancer target in the PI3K/Akt/ mTOR pathway. Here we reviewed the ATP-competitive small molecule PI3K inhibitors in the past few years, including the pan Class I PI3K inhibitors, the isoform-specific PI3K inhibitors and/or the PI3K/mTOR dual inhibitors. PMID:27769061

  1. Catalytic Activation of Small Molecules. Development and Characterisation of Ruthenium Complexes for Application in Catalysis


    Choi, Jong-Hoo


    In this work, the synthesis, characterisation and catalytic application of ruthenium pincer complexes is presented. In this context, new synthetic strategies are discussed to obtain novel ruthenium pincer dihydrogen complexes. Furthermore, the reactivity of the complexes towards small molecules (e.g. alcohols, boranes, ammonia, amines, nitriles and hydrogen) was observed, delivering fundamental insights into catalytic applications. With the reactivity testing, new borylated B-H-σ-complexes we...

  2. Introduction: MicroRNAs in human reproduction: small molecules with crucial regulatory roles. (United States)

    Imbar, Tal; Galliano, Daniela; Pellicer, Antonio; Laufer, Neri


    MicroRNAs constitute a large family of approximately 21-nucleotide-long, noncoding RNAs. They emerged more than 20 years ago as key posttranscriptional regulators of gene expression. The regulatory role of these small RNA molecules has recently begun to be explored in the human reproductive system. In this issue's Views and Reviews, the authors present the current knowledge regarding the involvement of microRNAs in several aspects of human reproduction and discuss its future implications for clinical practice.

  3. Saururus cernuus Lignans - Potent Small Molecule Inhibitors of Hypoxia-Inducible Factor-1


    Hossain, Chowdhury Faiz; Kim, Yong-Pil; Baerson, Scott R; Zhang, Lei; Bruick, Richard K.; Mohammed, Kaleem A.; Agarwal, Ameeta K.; Nagle, Dale G.; Zhou, Yu-Dong


    Hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) represents an important tumor-selective therapeutic target for solid tumors. In search of novel small molecule HIF-1 inhibitors, 5400 natural product-rich extracts from plants, marine organisms, and microbes were examined for HIF-1 inhibitory activities using a cell-based reporter assay. Bioassay-guided fractionation and isolation, followed by structure elucidation, yielded three potent natural product-derived HIF-1 inhibitors and two structurally related in...

  4. Activation of Small Molecules by DyI_2 and Dy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    1 Results The reactivities of dysprosium diiodide and metallic dysprosium toward small molecules are discussed.For instance,DyI2-induced silyl radical reactions are described.The combination of dysprosium diiodide and dichloromethane can serve as an effective methylene transfer reagent for cyclopropanation of unfunctionalized alkenes beyond that possible with other metal-dichloromethane systems.Furthermore,we report that the combination of chlorosilane and metallic Dy can also serve as an effective prom...

  5. A Small Molecule that Induces Intrinsic Pathway Apoptosis with Unparalleled Speed


    Rahul Palchaudhuri; Michael J. Lambrecht; Rachel C. Botham; Kathryn C. Partlow; Tjakko J. van Ham; Karson S. Putt; Laurie T. Nguyen; Seok-Ho Kim; Randall T. Peterson; Timothy M. Fan; Paul J. Hergenrother


    textabstractApoptosis is generally believed to be a process thatrequires several hours, in contrast to non-programmed forms of cell death that can occur in minutes. Our findings challenge the time-consuming nature of apoptosis as we describe the discovery and characterization of a small molecule, named Raptinal, which initiates intrinsic pathway caspase-dependent apoptosis within minutes in multiple cell lines. Comparison to a mechanistically diverse panel of apoptotic stimuli reveals that Ra...

  6. Label-free detection of small-molecule binding to a GPCR in the membrane environment. (United States)

    Heym, Roland G; Hornberger, Wilfried B; Lakics, Viktor; Terstappen, Georg C


    Evaluation of drug-target interaction kinetics is becoming increasingly important during the drug-discovery process to investigate selectivity of a drug and predict in vivo target occupancy. To date, it remains challenging to obtain kinetic information for interactions between G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) and small-molecule ligands in a label-free manner. Often GPCRs need to be solubilized or even stabilized by mutations which can be difficult and is time consuming. In addition, it is often unclear if the native conformation of the receptors is sustained. In this study, surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and surface acoustic wave (SAW) technologies have been used to detect ligand binding to the GPCR chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 4 (CXCR4) expressed in lipoparticles. We first evaluated different strategies to immobilize CXCR4-expressing lipoparticles. The highest small-molecule binding signal in SPR and SAW was achieved with a matrix-free carboxymethylated sensor chip coated with wheat germ agglutinin for lipoparticle capturing. Next, the binding kinetics of the anti-CXCR4 antibody 12G5 raised against a conformational epitope (k(on)=1.83×10(6)M(-1)s(-1), k(off)=2.79×10(-4) s(-1)) and the small molecule AMD3100 (k(on)=5.46×10(5)M(-1)s(-1), k(off)=1.01×10(-2)s(-1)) were assessed by SAW. Our kinetic and affinity data are consistent with previously published radioligand-binding experiments using cells and label-free experiments with solubilized CXCR4. This is the first study demonstrating label-free kinetic characterization of small-molecule binding to a GPCR in the membrane environment. The presented method holds the potential to greatly facilitate label-free assay development for GPRCs that can be expressed at high levels in lipoparticles.

  7. Small-molecule kinase inhibitors: an analysis of FDA-approved drugs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wu, Peng; Nielsen, Thomas Eiland; Clausen, Mads Hartvig


    Small-molecule kinase inhibitors (SMKIs), 28 of which are approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have been actively pursued as promising targeted therapeutics. Here, we assess the key structural and physicochemical properties, target selectivity and mechanism of function, and ther...... to be unreliable. Although previous SMKI research was concentrated on tyrosine kinase inhibitors for cancer treatment, recent progress indicates diversification of SMKI research in terms of new targets, mechanistic types, and therapeutic indications....

  8. Nonlinear Transport in Organic Thin Film Transistors with Soluble Small Molecule Semiconductor. (United States)

    Kim, Hyeok; Song, Dong-Seok; Kwon, Jin-Hyuk; Jung, Ji-Hoon; Kim, Do-Kyung; Kim, SeonMin; Kang, In Man; Park, Jonghoo; Tae, Heung-Sik; Battaglini, Nicolas; Lang, Philippe; Horowitz, Gilles; Bae, Jin-Hyuk


    Nonlinear transport is intensively explained through Poole-Frenkel (PF) transport mechanism in organic thin film transistors with solution-processed small molecules, which is, 6,13-bis(triisopropylsilylethynyl) (TIPS) pentacene. We outline a detailed electrical study that identifies the source to drain field dependent mobility. Devices with diverse channel lengths enable the extensive exhibition of field dependent mobility due to thermal activation of carriers among traps.

  9. Nanoimprinted distributed feedback dye laser sensor for real-time imaging of small molecule diffusion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vannahme, Christoph; Dufva, Martin; Kristensen, Anders


    Label-free imaging is a promising tool for the study of biological processes such as cell adhesion and small molecule signaling processes. In order to image in two dimensions of space current solutions require motorized stages which results in low imaging frame rates. Here, a highly sensitive...... of different grating periods which result in distinct laser emission wavelengths. Imaging in two dimensions of space is enabled by focusing an image of the laser surface with a cylindrical lens onto the entrance slit of an imaging spectrometer. Imaging is demonstrated by monitoring of diffusing small sucrose...

  10. Conserved Active Site Residues Limit Inhibition of a Copper-Containing Nitrite By Small Molecules

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tocheva, E.I.; Eltis, L.D.; Murphy, M.E.P.


    The interaction of copper-containing dissimilatory nitrite reductase from Alcaligenes faecalis S-6 ( AfNiR) with each of five small molecules was studied using crystallography and steady-state kinetics. Structural studies revealed that each small molecule interacted with the oxidized catalytic type 2 copper of AfNiR. Three small molecules (formate, acetate and nitrate) mimic the substrate by having at least two oxygen atoms for bidentate coordination to the type 2 copper atom. These three anions bound to the copper ion in the same asymmetric, bidentate manner as nitrite. Consistent with their weak inhibition of the enzyme ( K i >50 mM), the Cu-O distances in these AfNiR-inhibitor complexes were approximately 0.15 A longer than that observed in the AfNiR-nitrite complex. The binding mode of each inhibitor is determined in part by steric interactions with the side chain of active site residue Ile257. Moreover, the side chain of Asp98, a conserved residue that hydrogen bonds to type 2 copper-bound nitrite and nitric oxide, was either disordered or pointed away from the inhibitors. Acetate and formate inhibited AfNiR in a mixed fashion, consistent with the occurrence of second acetate binding site in the AfNiR-acetate complex that occludes access to the type 2 copper. A fourth small molecule, nitrous oxide, bound to the oxidized metal in a side-on fashion reminiscent of nitric oxide to the reduced copper. Nevertheless, nitrous oxide bound at a farther distance from the metal. The fifth small molecule, azide, inhibited the reduction of nitrite by AfNiR most strongly ( K ic = 2.0 +/- 0.1 mM). This ligand bound to the type 2 copper center end-on with a Cu-N c distance of approximately 2 A, and was the only inhibitor to form a hydrogen bond with Asp98. Overall, the data substantiate the roles of Asp98 and Ile257 in discriminating substrate from other small anions.

  11. A small molecule glycosaminoglycan mimetic blocks Plasmodium invasion of the mosquito midgut.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Derrick K Mathias

    Full Text Available Malaria transmission-blocking (T-B interventions are essential for malaria elimination. Small molecules that inhibit the Plasmodium ookinete-to-oocyst transition in the midgut of Anopheles mosquitoes, thereby blocking sporogony, represent one approach to achieving this goal. Chondroitin sulfate glycosaminoglycans (CS-GAGs on the Anopheles gambiae midgut surface are putative ligands for Plasmodium falciparum ookinetes. We hypothesized that our synthetic polysulfonated polymer, VS1, acting as a decoy molecular mimetic of midgut CS-GAGs confers malaria T-B activity. In our study, VS1 repeatedly reduced midgut oocyst development by as much as 99% (P<0.0001 in mosquitoes fed with P. falciparum and Plasmodium berghei. Through direct-binding assays, we observed that VS1 bound to two critical ookinete micronemal proteins, each containing at least one von Willebrand factor A (vWA domain: (i circumsporozoite protein and thrombospondin-related anonymous protein-related protein (CTRP and (ii vWA domain-related protein (WARP. By immunofluorescence microscopy, we observed that VS1 stains permeabilized P. falciparum and P. berghei ookinetes but does not stain P. berghei CTRP knockouts or transgenic parasites lacking the vWA domains of CTRP while retaining the thrombospondin repeat region. We produced structural homology models of the first vWA domain of CTRP and identified, as expected, putative GAG-binding sites on CTRP that align closely with those predicted for the human vWA A1 domain and the Toxoplasma gondii MIC2 adhesin. Importantly, the models also identified patches of electropositive residues that may extend CTRP's GAG-binding motif and thus potentiate VS1 binding. Our molecule binds to a critical, conserved ookinete protein, CTRP, and exhibits potent malaria T-B activity. This study lays the framework for a high-throughput screen of existing libraries of safe compounds to identify those with potent T-B activity. We envision that such compounds when

  12. Non-Peptide-based Small-Molecule Probe for Fluorogenic and Chromogenic Detection of Chymotrypsin. (United States)

    Wu, Lei; Yang, Shu-Hou; Xiong, Hao; Yang, Jia-Qian; Guo, Jun; Yang, Wen-Chao; Yang, Guang-Fu


    We report herein a non-peptide-based small molecule probe for fluorogenic and chromogenic detection of chymotrypsin, and the primary application. This probe was rationally designed by mimicking the peptide substrate and optimized by adjusting the recognization group. The refined probe 2 exhibits good specificity toward chymotrypsin, producing about 25-fold higher enhancement in both the fluorescence intensity and absorbance upon the catalysis by chymotrypsin. Compared with the most widely used peptide substrate (AMC-FPAA-Suc) of chymotrypsin, probe 2 shows about 5-fold higher binding affinity, and comparable catalytical efficiency against chymotrypsin. Furthermore, it was successfully applied for the inhibitor characterization. To the best of our knowledge, probe 2 is the first non-peptide-based small-molecule probe for chymotrypsin, with the advantages of simple structure and high sensitivity compared to the widely used peptide-based substrates. This small-molecule probe is expected to be a useful molecular tool for drug discovery and chymotrypsin-related diseases diagnosis.

  13. Modulation of neurogenesis by targeting epigenetic enzymes using small molecules: an overview. (United States)

    Swaminathan, Amrutha; Kumar, Manoj; Halder Sinha, Sarmistha; Schneider-Anthony, Anne; Boutillier, Anne-Laurence; Kundu, Tapas K


    Neurogenesis consists of a plethora of complex cellular processes including neural stem cell (NSC) proliferation, migration, maturation or differentiation to neurons, and finally integration into the pre-existing neural circuits in the brain, which are temporally regulated and coordinated sequentially. Mammalian neurogenesis begins during embryonic development and continues in postnatal brain (adult neurogenesis). It is now evident that adult neurogenesis is driven by extracellular and intracellular signaling pathways, where epigenetic modifications like reversible histone acetylation, methylation, as well as DNA methylation play a vital role. Epigenetic regulation of gene expression during neural development is governed mainly by histone acetyltransferases (HATs), histone methyltransferase (HMTs), DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs), and also the enzymes for reversal, like histone deacetylases (HDACs), and many of these have also been shown to be involved in the regulation of adult neurogenesis. The contribution of these epigenetic marks to neurogenesis is increasingly being recognized, through knockout studies and small molecule modulator based studies. These small molecules are directly involved in regeneration and repair of neurons, and not only have applications from a therapeutic point of view, but also provide a tool to study the process of neurogenesis itself. In the present Review, we will focus on small molecules that act predominantly on epigenetic enzymes to enhance neurogenesis and neuroprotection and discuss the mechanism and recent advancements in their synthesis, targeting, and biology.

  14. Direct Reprogramming of Mouse Fibroblasts to Neural Stem Cells by Small Molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan-Chuang Han


    Full Text Available Although it is possible to generate neural stem cells (NSC from somatic cells by reprogramming technologies with transcription factors, clinical utilization of patient-specific NSC for the treatment of human diseases remains elusive. The risk hurdles are associated with viral transduction vectors induced mutagenesis, tumor formation from undifferentiated stem cells, and transcription factors-induced genomic instability. Here we describe a viral vector-free and more efficient method to induce mouse fibroblasts into NSC using small molecules. The small molecule-induced neural stem (SMINS cells closely resemble NSC in morphology, gene expression patterns, self-renewal, excitability, and multipotency. Furthermore, the SMINS cells are able to differentiate into astrocytes, functional neurons, and oligodendrocytes in vitro and in vivo. Thus, we have established a novel way to efficiently induce neural stem cells (iNSC from fibroblasts using only small molecules without altering the genome. Such chemical induction removes the risks associated with current techniques such as the use of viral vectors or the induction of oncogenic factors. This technique may, therefore, enable NSC to be utilized in various applications within clinical medicine.

  15. Lessons from the swamp: developing small molecules that confer salamander muscle cellularization in mammals. (United States)

    Um, JungIn; Jung, Da-Woon; Williams, Darren Reece


    The ability of salamanders, such as newts, to regenerate damaged tissues has been studied for centuries. A prominent example of this regenerative power is the ability to re-grow entire amputated limbs. One important step in this regeneration process is skeletal muscle cellularization, in which the muscle fibers break down into dedifferentiated, mononuclear cells that proliferate and form new muscle in the replacement limb. In contrast, mammalian skeletal muscle does not undergo cellularization after injury. A significant proportion of research about tissue regeneration in salamanders aims to characterize regulatory genes that may have mammalian homologs. A less mainstream approach is to develop small molecule compounds that induce regeneration-related mechanisms in mammals. In this commentary, we discuss progress in discovering small molecules that induce cellularization in mammalian muscle. New research findings using these compounds has also shed light on cellular processes that regulate cellularization, such as apoptotic signaling. Although formidable technical hurdles remain, this progress increases our understanding of tissue regeneration and provide opportunities for developing small molecules that may enhance tissue repair in humans.

  16. Rapid Discovery of Functional Small Molecule Ligands against Proteomic Targets through Library-Against-Library Screening. (United States)

    Wu, Chun-Yi; Wang, Don-Hong; Wang, Xiaobing; Dixon, Seth M; Meng, Liping; Ahadi, Sara; Enter, Daniel H; Chen, Chao-Yu; Kato, Jason; Leon, Leonardo J; Ramirez, Laura M; Maeda, Yoshiko; Reis, Carolina F; Ribeiro, Brianna; Weems, Brittany; Kung, Hsing-Jien; Lam, Kit S


    Identifying "druggable" targets and their corresponding therapeutic agents are two fundamental challenges in drug discovery research. The one-bead-one-compound (OBOC) combinatorial library method has been developed to discover peptides or small molecules that bind to a specific target protein or elicit a specific cellular response. The phage display cDNA expression proteome library method has been employed to identify target proteins that interact with specific compounds. Here, we combined these two high-throughput approaches, efficiently interrogated approximately 10(13) possible molecular interactions, and identified 91 small molecule compound beads that interacted strongly with the phage library. Of 19 compounds resynthesized, 4 were cytotoxic against cancer cells; one of these compounds was found to interact with EIF5B and inhibit protein translation. As more binding pairs are confirmed and evaluated, the "library-against-library" screening approach and the resulting small molecule-protein domain interaction database may serve as a valuable tool for basic research and drug development.

  17. Making cardiomyocytes with your chemistry set:Small molecule-induced cardiogenesis in somatic cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Woong-Hee; Kim; Da-Woon; Jung; Darren; Reece; Williams


    Cell transplantation is an attractive potential therapy for heart diseases. For example, myocardial infarction(MI) is a leading cause of mortality in many countries. Numerous medical interventions have been developed to stabilize patients with MI and, although this has increased survival rates, there is currently no clinically approved method to reverse the loss of cardiac muscle cells(cardiomyocytes) that accompanies this disease. Cell transplantation has been proposed as a method to replace cardiomyocytes, but a safe and reliable source of cardiogenic cells is required. An ideal source would be the patients’ own somatic tissue cells, which could be converted into cardiogenic cells and transplanted into the site of MI. However, these are difficult to produce in large quantities and standardized protocols to produce cardiac cells would be advantageous for the research community. To achieve these research goals, small molecules represent attractive tools to control cell behavior. In this editorial, we introduce the use of small molecules in stem cell research and summarize their application to the induction of cardiogenesis in noncardiac cells. Exciting new developments in this field are discussed, which we hope will encourage cardiac stem cell biologists to further consider employing small molecules in their culture protocols.

  18. A small molecule restores function to TRPML1 mutant isoforms responsible for mucolipidosis type IV. (United States)

    Chen, Cheng-Chang; Keller, Marco; Hess, Martin; Schiffmann, Raphael; Urban, Nicole; Wolfgardt, Annette; Schaefer, Michael; Bracher, Franz; Biel, Martin; Wahl-Schott, Christian; Grimm, Christian


    Mucolipidosis type IV (MLIV) is an autosomal recessive lysosomal storage disorder often characterized by severe neurodevelopmental abnormalities and neuro-retinal degeneration. Mutations in the TRPML1 gene are causative for MLIV. We used lead optimization strategies to identify--and MLIV patient fibroblasts to test--small-molecule activators for their potential to restore TRPML1 mutant channel function. Using the whole-lysosome planar patch-clamp technique, we found that activation of MLIV mutant isoforms by the endogenous ligand PI(3,5)P2 is strongly reduced, while activity can be increased using synthetic ligands. We also found that the F465L mutation renders TRPML1 pH insensitive, while F408Δ impacts synthetic ligand binding. Trafficking defects and accumulation of zinc in lysosomes of MLIV mutant fibroblasts can be rescued by the small molecule treatment. Collectively, our data demonstrate that small molecules can be used to restore channel function and rescue disease associated abnormalities in patient cells expressing specific MLIV point mutations.

  19. Suppression of the FOXM1 transcriptional programme via novel small molecule inhibition. (United States)

    Gormally, Michael V; Dexheimer, Thomas S; Marsico, Giovanni; Sanders, Deborah A; Lowe, Christopher; Matak-Vinković, Dijana; Michael, Sam; Jadhav, Ajit; Rai, Ganesha; Maloney, David J; Simeonov, Anton; Balasubramanian, Shankar


    The transcription factor FOXM1 binds to sequence-specific motifs on DNA (C/TAAACA) through its DNA-binding domain (DBD) and activates proliferation- and differentiation-associated genes. Aberrant overexpression of FOXM1 is a key feature in oncogenesis and progression of many human cancers. Here--from a high-throughput screen applied to a library of 54,211 small molecules--we identify novel small molecule inhibitors of FOXM1 that block DNA binding. One of the identified compounds, FDI-6 (NCGC00099374), is characterized in depth and is shown to bind directly to FOXM1 protein, to displace FOXM1 from genomic targets in MCF-7 breast cancer cells, and induce concomitant transcriptional downregulation. Global transcript profiling of MCF-7 cells by RNA-seq shows that FDI-6 specifically downregulates FOXM1-activated genes with FOXM1 occupancy confirmed by ChIP-PCR. This small molecule-mediated effect is selective for FOXM1-controlled genes with no effect on genes regulated by homologous forkhead family factors.

  20. Identification of the first small-molecule inhibitor of the REV7 DNA repair protein interaction. (United States)

    Actis, Marcelo L; Ambaye, Nigus D; Evison, Benjamin J; Shao, Youming; Vanarotti, Murugendra; Inoue, Akira; McDonald, Ezelle T; Kikuchi, Sotaro; Heath, Richard; Hara, Kodai; Hashimoto, Hiroshi; Fujii, Naoaki


    DNA interstrand crosslink (ICL) repair (ICLR) has been implicated in the resistance of cancer cells to ICL-inducing chemotherapeutic agents. Despite the clinical significance of ICL-inducing chemotherapy, few studies have focused on developing small-molecule inhibitors for ICLR. The mammalian DNA polymerase ζ, which comprises the catalytic subunit REV3L and the non-catalytic subunit REV7, is essential for ICLR. To identify small-molecule compounds that are mechanistically capable of inhibiting ICLR by targeting REV7, high-throughput screening and structure-activity relationship (SAR) analysis were performed. Compound 1 was identified as an inhibitor of the interaction of REV7 with the REV7-binding sequence of REV3L. Compound 7 (an optimized analog of compound 1) bound directly to REV7 in nuclear magnetic resonance analyses, and inhibited the reactivation of a reporter plasmid containing an ICL in between the promoter and reporter regions. The normalized clonogenic survival of HeLa cells treated with cisplatin and compound 7 was lower than that for cells treated with cisplatin only. These findings indicate that a small-molecule inhibitor of the REV7/REV3L interaction can chemosensitize cells by inhibiting ICLR.