Structure-based design of a general class of mechanism-based inhibitors of the serine proteinases employing a novel amino acid-derived heterocyclic scaffold

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Groutas, William C.
Kuang, Rongze
Venkataraman, Radhika
Epp, Jeffrey B.
Ruan, Sumei
Prakash, Om
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We describe in this paper the structure-based design of a general class of heterocyclic mechanism-based inhibitors of the serine proteinases that embody in their structure a novel peptidomimetic scaffold (1,2,5-thiadiazolidin-3-one 1,1-dioxide). Sulfone derivatives of this class (I) were found to be time-dependent, potent, and highly efficient irreversible inhibitors of human leukocyte elastase, cathepsin G, and proteinase 3. The partition ratios for a select number of inhibitors were found to range between 0 and 1. We furthermore demonstrate that these inhibitors exhibit remarkable enzyme selectivity that is dictated by the nature of the P1 residue and is consistent with the known substrate specificity reported for these enzymes. Thus, inhibitors with small hydrophobic side chains were found to be effective inhibitors of elastase, those with aromatic side chains of cathepsin G, and those with a basic side chain of bovine trypsin. Taken together, the findings cited herein reveal the emergence of a general class of stable mechanism-based inhibitors of the serine proteinases which can be readily synthesized using amino acid precursors. Biochemical and high-field NMR studies show that the interaction of this class of inhibitors with a serine proteinase results in the formation of a stable acyl complex(es) and the release of benzenesulfinate, formaldehyde, and a low molecular weight heterocycle. The data are consistent with initial formation of a Michaelis-Menten complex, acylation of Ser195, and tandem loss of the leaving group. The initial HLE-inhibitor complex reacts with water generating formaldehyde and a stable HLE-inhibitor complex. Whether the initial HLE-inhibitor complex also reacts with His57 to form a third complex is not known at this point. The desirable salient parameters associated with this class of inhibitors, including the expeditious generation of structurally diverse libraries of inhibitors based on I, suggest that this class of mechanism-based inhibitors is of general applicability and can be used in the development of inhibitors of human and viral serine proteinases of clinical relevance.

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Biochemistry. 1997 Apr 22; 36(16): 4739-50.
American Chemical Society
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