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Discovery of a Type III Inhibitor of LIM Kinase 2 That Binds in a DFG-Out Conformation

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posted on 08.01.2015 by Nicole C. Goodwin, Giovanni Cianchetta, Hugh A. Burgoon, Jason Healy, Ross Mabon, Eric D. Strobel, Jason Allen, Shuli Wang, Brian D. Hamman, David B. Rawlins
The first allosteric, type III inhibitor of LIM-kinase 2 (LIMK2) is reported. A series of molecules that feature both an N-phenylsulfonamide and tertiary amide were not only very potent at LIMK2 but also were extremely selective against a panel of other kinases. Enzymatic kinetic studies showed these molecules to be noncompetitive with ATP, suggesting allosteric inhibition. X-ray crystallography confirmed that these sulfonamides are a rare example of a type III kinase inhibitor that binds away from the highly conserved hinge region and instead resides in the hydrophobic pocket formed in the DFG-out conformation of the kinase, thus accounting for the high level of selectivity observed.

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