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Discovery of a Potent HIV Integrase Inhibitor That Leads to a Prodrug with Significant anti-HIV Activity

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journal contribution
posted on 08.12.2011, 00:00 by Byung I. Seo, Vinod R. Uchil, Maurice Okello, Sanjay Mishra, Xiao-Hui Ma, Malik Nishonov, Qingning Shu, Guochen Chi, Vasu Nair
Worldwide research efforts in drug discovery involving HIV integrase have produced only one compound, raltegravir, that has been approved for clinical use in HIV/AIDS. As resistance, toxicity, and drug–drug interactions are recurring issues with all classes of anti-HIV drugs, the discovery of novel integrase inhibitors remains a significant scientific challenge. We have designed a lead HIV-1 strand transfer (ST) inhibitor (IC50 70 nM), strategically assembled on a pyridinone scaffold. A focused structure–activity investigation of this parent compound led to a significantly more potent ST inhibitor, 2 (IC50 6 ± 3 nM). Compound 2 exhibits good stability in pooled human liver microsomes. It also displays a notably favorable profile with respect to key human cytochrome P450 (CYP) isozymes and human UDP glucuronosyl transferases (UGTs). The prodrug of inhibitor 2, i.e., compound 10, was found to possess remarkable anti-HIV-1 activity in cell culture (EC50 9 ± 4 nM, CC50 135 ± 7 μM, therapeutic index = 15 000).