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Identification of Parthenolide Dimers as Activators of Pyruvate Kinase M2 in Xenografts of Glioblastoma Multiforme in Vivo

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posted on 03.02.2020 by Yahui Ding, Qingqing Xue, Shuo Liu, Kai Hu, Da Wang, Tianpeng Wang, Ye Li, Hongyu Guo, Xin Hao, Weizhi Ge, Yan Zhang, Ang Li, Jing Li, Yue Chen, Quan Zhang
Herein we detail the discovery of a series of parthenolide dimers as activators of PKM2 and evaluation of their anti-GBM activities. The most promising compound 5 showed high potency to activate PKM2 with an AC50 value of 15 nM, inhibited proliferation and metastasis, and induced apoptosis of GBM cells. Compound 5 could promote tetramer formation of PKM2 and reduce nucleus translocation of PKM2 in GBM cells without influence on the expression of total PKM2, thereby inhibiting the STAT3 signal pathway in vitro and in vivo. PKM2 knockdown assay demonstrated that the anti-GBM effect of 5 mainly depended on the expression of PKM2 in vitro and in vivo. Compound 16, a prodrug of 5, markedly suppressed U118 tumor xenograft growth and reduced the weight of tumor. On the basis of these investigations, we propose that 16 might be considered as a promising lead compound for discovery of anti-GBM drugs.