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Identification of Vitamin D3-Based Hedgehog Pathway Inhibitors That Incorporate an Aromatic A‑Ring Isostere

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journal contribution
posted on 11.07.2013, 00:00 authored by Albert M. DeBerardinis, Upasana Banerjee, M. Kyle Hadden
Previous structure–activity relationship studies for vitamin D3 (VD3) inhibition of Hedgehog (Hh) signaling directed the design, synthesis, and evaluation of a series of VD3-based analogues that contain an aromatic A-ring mimic. Characterization of these compounds in a series of cellular assays demonstrated their ability to potently and selectively down-regulate Hh pathway signaling. The most active of these, 17, inhibited pathway signaling in Hh-dependent mouse fibroblasts (IC50 = 0.74 ± 0.1 μM) and cultured cancer cells (IC50 values 3.8 ± 0.1 to 5.2 ± 0.2 μM). In addition, 17 demonstrated reduced activation of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) compared to VD3 in these cellular models. These results suggest that VD3-based analogues with an aromatic A-ring are a valid scaffold for the development of more selective and potent Hh pathway inhibitors and identify 17 as an intriguing lead from this class of compounds for further development. In addition, our analysis of Hh pathway inhibitors in cancer cells suggests that the murine basal cell carcinoma cell line ASZ001 and the human medulloblastoma cell line DAOY are appropriate in vitro cancer models for early stage evaluation of pathway inhibition.