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Journal articleRueda-Zubiaurre A, Yahiya S, Fischer O, et al., 2020,
Structure-activity relationship studies of a novel class of transmission blocking antimalarials targeting male gametes., Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, Vol: 63, Pages: 2240-2262, ISSN: 0022-2623
Malaria is still a leading cause of mortality among children in the developing world, and despite the immense progress made in reducing the global burden, further efforts are needed if eradication is to be achieved. In this context, targeting transmission is widely recognized as a necessary intervention towards that goal. After carrying out a screen to discover new transmission-blocking agents, herein we report our medicinal chemistry efforts to study the potential of the most robust hit, DDD01035881, as a male-gamete targeted compound. We reveal key structural features for the activity of this series and identify analogues with greater potency and improved metabolic stability. We believe this study lays the groundwork for further development of this series as a transmission blocking agent.
Journal articleDian C, Inmaculada P-D, Riviere F, et al., 2020,
High-resolution snapshots of human N-myristoyltransferase in action illuminate a mechanism promoting N-terminal Lys and Gly myristoylation, Nature Communications, Vol: 11, Pages: 1-15, ISSN: 2041-1723
The promising drug target N-myristoyltransferase (NMT) catalyses an essential protein modification thought to occur exclusively at N-terminal glycines (Gly). Here, we present high-resolution human NMT1 structures co-crystallised with reactive cognate lipid and peptide substrates, revealing high-resolution snapshots of the entire catalytic mechanism from the initial to final reaction states. Structural comparisons, together with biochemical analysis, provide unforeseen details about how NMT1 reaches a catalytically competent conformation in which the reactive groups are brought into close proximity to enable catalysis. We demonstrate that this mechanism further supports efficient and unprecedented myristoylation of an N-terminal lysine side chain, providing evidence that NMT acts both as N-terminal-lysine and glycine myristoyltransferase.
Journal articleLucy D, Zhang L, Tate EW, 2020,
A Natural Product Puts Malaria on a Low-Fat Diet, CELL CHEMICAL BIOLOGY, Vol: 27, Pages: 137-139, ISSN: 2451-9448
Journal articleHoward RT, Hemsley P, Petteruti P, et al., 2020,
Structure-guided design and in-cell target profiling of a cell-active target engagement probe for PARP inhibitors, ACS Chemical Biology, Vol: 15, Pages: 325-333, ISSN: 1554-8929
Inhibition of the poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) family of enzymes has become an attractive therapeutic strategy in oncology and beyond; however, chemical tools to profile PARP engagement in live cells are lacking. Herein, we report the design and application of PARPYnD, the first photoaffinity probe (AfBP) for PARP enzymes based on triple PARP1/2/6 inhibitor AZ9482, which induces multipolar spindle (MPS) formation in breast cancer cells. PARPYnD is a robust tool for profiling PARP1/2 and is used to profile clinical PARP inhibitor olaparib, identifying several novel off-target proteins. Surprisingly, while PARPYnD can enrich recombinant PARP6 spiked into cellular lysates and inhibits PARP6 in cell-free assays, it does not label PARP6 in intact cells. These data highlight an intriguing biomolecular disparity between recombinant and endogenous PARP6. PARPYnD provides a new approach to expand our knowledge of the targets of this class of compounds and the mechanisms of action of PARP inhibitors in cancer.
Journal articleBenfield CT, MacKenzie F, Ritzefeld M, et al., 2020,
Bat IFITM3 restriction depends on S-palmitoylation and a polymorphic site within the CD225 domain, Life Science Alliance, Vol: 3, ISSN: 2575-1077
Host interferon-induced transmembrane proteins (IFITMs) are broad-spectrum antiviral restriction factors. Of these, IFITM3 potently inhibits viruses that enter cells through acidic endosomes, many of which are zoonotic and emerging viruses with bats (order Chiroptera) as their natural hosts. We previously demonstrated that microbat IFITM3 is antiviral. Here, we show that bat IFITMs are characterized by strong adaptive evolution and identify a highly variable and functionally important site-codon 70-within the conserved CD225 domain of IFITMs. Mutation of this residue in microbat IFITM3 impairs restriction of representatives of four different virus families that enter cells via endosomes. This mutant shows altered subcellular localization and reduced S-palmitoylation, a phenotype copied by mutation of conserved cysteine residues in microbat IFITM3. Furthermore, we show that microbat IFITM3 is S-palmitoylated on cysteine residues C71, C72, and C105, mutation of each cysteine individually impairs virus restriction, and a triple C71A-C72A-C105A mutant loses all restriction activity, concomitant with subcellular re-localization of microbat IFITM3 to Golgi-associated sites. Thus, we propose that S-palmitoylation is critical for Chiropteran IFITM3 function and identify a key molecular determinant of IFITM3 S-palmitoylation.
Journal articleKryza T, Bock N, Lovell S, et al., 2020,
The molecular function of kallikrein-related peptidase 14 demonstrates a key modulatory role in advanced prostate cancer, Molecular Oncology, Vol: 14, Pages: 105-128, ISSN: 1574-7891
Kallikrein-related peptidase 14 (KLK14) is one of several secreted KLK serine proteases involved in prostate cancer (PCa) pathogenesis. While relatively understudied, recent reports have identified KLK14 as overexpressed during PCa development. However, the modulation of KLK14 expression during PCa progression and the molecular and biological functions of this protease in the prostate tumour microenvironment remain unknown. To determine the modulation of KLK14 expression during PCa progression, we analysed the expression levels of KLK14 in patient samples using publicly available databases and immunohistochemistry. In order to delineate the molecular mechanisms involving KLK14 in PCa progression, we integrated proteomic, transcriptomic and in vitro assays with the goal to identify substrates, related-signalling pathways and functional roles of this protease. We showed that KLK14 expression is elevated in advanced PCa, and particularly in metastasis. Additionally, KLK14 levels were found to be decreased in PCa tissues from patients responsive to neo-adjuvant therapy compared to untreated patients. Furthermore, we also identified that KLK14 expression re-occurred in patients who developed castrate-resistant PCa. The combination of proteomic and transcriptomic analysis as well as functional assays revealed several new KLK14-substrates (agrin, desmoglein 2, vitronectin, laminins) and KLK14-regulated genes (Interleukin 32, midkine, Sox9), particularly an involvement of the MAPK1 and IL1RN pathways, and an involvement of KLK14 in the regulation of cellular migration, supporting its involvement in aggressive features of PCa progression. In conclusion, our work showed that KLK14 expression is associated with the development of aggressive PCa suggesting that targeting this protease could offer a novel route to limit the progression of prostate tumours. Additional work is necessary to determine the benefits and implications of targeting/co-targeting KLK14 in PCa as well as to
Journal articleBarry R, Ruano-Gallego D, Radhakrishnan ST, et al., 2020,
Faecal neutrophil elastase-antiprotease balance reflects colitis severity, Mucosal Immunology, Vol: 13, Pages: 322-333, ISSN: 1933-0219
Given the global burden of diarrheal diseases on healthcare it is surprising how little is known about the drivers of disease severity. Colitis caused by infection and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is characterised by neutrophil infiltration into the intestinal mucosa and yet our understanding of neutrophil responses during colitis is incomplete. Using infectious (Citrobacter rodentium) and chemical (dextran sulphate sodium; DSS) murine colitis models, as well as human IBD samples, we find that faecal neutrophil elastase (NE) activity reflects disease severity. During C. rodentium infection intestinal epithelial cells secrete the serine protease inhibitor SerpinA3N to inhibit and mitigate tissue damage caused by extracellular NE. Mice suffering from severe infection produce insufficient SerpinA3N to control excessive NE activity. This activity contributes to colitis severity as infection of these mice with a recombinant C. rodentium strain producing and secreting SerpinA3N reduces tissue damage. Thus, uncontrolled luminal NE activity is involved in severe colitis. Taken together, our findings suggest that NE activity could be a useful faecal biomarker for assessing disease severity as well as therapeutic target for both infectious and chronic inflammatory colitis.
Journal articleBeard R, Gaboriau D, Gee A, et al., 2019,
Chemical biology tools for probing transcytosis at the blood-brain barrier, Chemical Science, Vol: 10, Pages: 10772-10778, ISSN: 2041-6520
Absorptive- and receptor-mediated transcytosis (AMT/RMT) are widely studied strategies to deliver therapeutics across the blood–brain barrier (BBB). However, an improved understanding of the mechanism surrounding trafficking is required that could promote delivery. Accordingly, we designed a flexible platform that merged AMT and RMT motifs on a single scaffold to probe various parameters (ligand, affinity, valency, position) in a screening campaign. During this process we adapted an in vitro BBB model to reliably rank transcytosis of the vehicle library. Our results demonstrate heightened uptake and trafficking for the shuttles, with a structure–activity relationship for transcytosis emerging. Notably, due to their small size, the majority of shuttles demonstrated increased permeation compared to transferrin, with the highest performing shuttle affording a 4.9-fold increase. Consequently, we have identified novel peptide conjugates that have the capacity to act as promising brain shuttles.
Journal articleDoll S, Freitas FP, Shah R, et al., 2019,
FSP1 is a glutathione-independent ferroptosis suppressor, Nature, Vol: 575, Pages: 693-698, ISSN: 0028-0836
Ferroptosis is an iron-dependent form of necrotic cell death marked by oxidative damage to phospholipids1,2. To date, ferroptosis has been thought to be controlled only by the phospholipid hydroperoxide-reducing enzyme glutathione peroxidase 4 (GPX4)3,4 and radical-trapping antioxidants5,6. However, elucidation of the factors that underlie the sensitivity of a given cell type to ferroptosis7 is crucial to understand the pathophysiological role of ferroptosis and how it may be exploited for the treatment of cancer. Although metabolic constraints8 and phospholipid composition9,10 contribute to ferroptosis sensitivity, no cell-autonomous mechanisms have been identified that account for the resistance of cells to ferroptosis. Here we used an expression cloning approach to identify genes in human cancer cells that are able to complement the loss of GPX4. We found that the flavoprotein apoptosis-inducing factor mitochondria-associated 2 (AIFM2) is a previously unrecognized anti-ferroptotic gene. AIFM2, which we renamed ferroptosis suppressor protein 1 (FSP1) and which was initially described as a pro-apoptotic gene11, confers protection against ferroptosis elicited by GPX4 deletion. We further demonstrate that the suppression of ferroptosis by FSP1 is mediated by ubiquinone (also known as coenzyme Q10, CoQ10): the reduced form, ubiquinol, traps lipid peroxyl radicals that mediate lipid peroxidation, whereas FSP1 catalyses the regeneration of CoQ10 using NAD(P)H. Pharmacological targeting of FSP1 strongly synergizes with GPX4 inhibitors to trigger ferroptosis in a number of cancer entities. In conclusion, the FSP1-CoQ10-NAD(P)H pathway exists as a stand-alone parallel system, which co-operates with GPX4 and glutathione to suppress phospholipid peroxidation and ferroptosis.
Journal articleLim C, Ha KP, Clarke R, et al., 2019,
Identification of a potent small-molecule inhibitor of bacterial DNA repair that potentiates quinolone antibiotic activity in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, Vol: 27, Pages: 1-7, ISSN: 0968-0896
The global emergence of antibiotic resistance is one of the most serious challenges facing modern medicine. There is an urgent need for validation of new drug targets and the development of small molecules with novel mechanisms of action. We therefore sought to inhibit bacterial DNA repair mediated by the AddAB/RecBCD protein complexes as a means to sensitize bacteria to DNA damage caused by the host immune system or quinolone antibiotics. A rational, hypothesis-driven compound optimization identified IMP-1700 as a cell-active, nanomolar potency compound. IMP-1700 sensitized multidrug-resistant Staphylococcus aureus to the fluoroquinolone antibiotic ciprofloxacin, where resistance results from a point mutation in the fluoroquinolone target, DNA gyrase. Cellular reporter assays indicated IMP-1700 inhibited the bacterial SOS-response to DNA damage, and compound-functionalized Sepharose successfully pulled-down the AddAB repair complex. This work provides validation of bacterial DNA repair as a novel therapeutic target and delivers IMP-1700 as a tool molecule and starting point for therapeutic development to address the pressing challenge of antibiotic resistance.
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