A refined model of the colchicine site on tubulin was used to design an improved analog of the pyrrole parent compound, JG- 03-14. The optimized compound, NT-7-16, was evaluated in biological assays that confirm that it has potent activities as a new colchicine site microtubule depolymerizer. NT-7-16 exhibits antiproliferative and cytotoxic activities against multiple cancer cell lines, with IC50 values of 10-16 nM, and it is able to overcome drug resistance mediated by the expression of P-glycoprotein and the bIII isotype of tubulin. NT-7-16 initiated the concentration-dependent loss of cellular microtubules and caused the formation of abnormal mitotic spindles, leading to mitotic accumulation. The direct interaction of NT-7-16 with purified tubulin was confirmed, and it was more potent than combretastatin A-4 in these assays. Binding studies verified that NT-7-16 binds to tubulin within the colchicine site. The antitumor effects of NT-7-16 were evaluated in an MDA-MB-435 xenograft model and it had excellent activity at concentrations that were not toxic. A second compound, NT-9-21, which contains dichloro moieties in place of the 3,5-dibromo substituents of NT- 7-16, had a poorer fit within the colchicine site as predicted by modeling and the Hydropathic INTeractions score. Biological evaluations showed that NT-9-21 has 10-fold lower potency than NT-7-16, confirming the modeling predictions. These studies highlight the value of the refined colchicine-site model and identify a new pyrrole-based colchicine-site agent with potent in vitro activities and promising in vivo antitumor actions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Medicine