G-quadruplexes (G4s) are implicated in pathological processes such as cancer and infective diseases. Their targeting with G4-ligands has shown therapeutic capacity. Most of the current G4-ligands are planar molecules, do not discriminate among G4s, and have poor druglike properties. The available methods to identify compounds selective for one single G4 are often time-consuming. Here, we describe the development, validation, and application of an affinity-selection mass spectrometry method that employs unlabeled G4 oligonucleotides as targets and allows testing of up to 320 unmodified small molecules in a single tube. As a proof of concept, this method was applied to screen a library of 40 »000 druglike molecules against two G4s, transcriptional regulators of the HIV-1 LTR promoter. We identified nonplanar pyrazolopyrimidines that selectively recognize and stabilize the major HIV-1 LTR G4 possibly by fitting and binding through H-bonding in its unique binding pocket. The compounds inhibit LTR promoter activity and HIV-1 replication. We propose this method to prompt the fast development of new G4-based therapeutics.

Selective Recognition of a Single HIV-1 G-Quadruplex by Ultrafast Small-Molecule Screening

Scalabrin M.;Nadai M.;Tassinari M.;Lago S.;Doria F.;Frasson I.;Richter S. N.
2021

Abstract

G-quadruplexes (G4s) are implicated in pathological processes such as cancer and infective diseases. Their targeting with G4-ligands has shown therapeutic capacity. Most of the current G4-ligands are planar molecules, do not discriminate among G4s, and have poor druglike properties. The available methods to identify compounds selective for one single G4 are often time-consuming. Here, we describe the development, validation, and application of an affinity-selection mass spectrometry method that employs unlabeled G4 oligonucleotides as targets and allows testing of up to 320 unmodified small molecules in a single tube. As a proof of concept, this method was applied to screen a library of 40 »000 druglike molecules against two G4s, transcriptional regulators of the HIV-1 LTR promoter. We identified nonplanar pyrazolopyrimidines that selectively recognize and stabilize the major HIV-1 LTR G4 possibly by fitting and binding through H-bonding in its unique binding pocket. The compounds inhibit LTR promoter activity and HIV-1 replication. We propose this method to prompt the fast development of new G4-based therapeutics.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11577/3417725
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