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Integrated Synthetic, Biophysical, and Computational Investigations of Covalent Inhibitors of Prolyl Oligopeptidase and Fibroblast Activation Protein α

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journal contribution
posted on 21.08.2019, 20:44 by Jessica Plescia, Stéphane De Cesco, Mihai Burai Patrascu, Jerry Kurian, Justin Di Trani, Caroline Dufresne, Alexander S. Wahba, Naëla Janmamode, Anthony K. Mittermaier, Nicolas Moitessier
Over the past decade, there has been increasing interest in covalent inhibition as a drug design strategy. Our own interest in the development of prolyl oligopeptidase (POP) and fibroblast activation protein α (FAP) covalent inhibitors has led us to question whether these two serine proteases were equal in terms of their reactivity toward electrophilic warheads. To streamline such investigations, we exploited both computational and experimental methods to investigate the influence of different reactive groups on both potency and binding kinetics using both our own series of POP inhibitors and others’ discovered hits. A direct correlation between inhibitor reactivity and residence time was demonstrated through quantum mechanics methods and further supported by experimental studies. This computational method was also successfully applied to FAP, as an overview of known FAP inhibitors confirmed our computational predictions that more reactive warheads (e.g., boronic acids) must be employed to inhibit FAP than for POP.

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