Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 5

virtual screening Related Abstracts

5 Virtual Screening of Potential Inhibitors against Efflux Pumps of Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Authors: Gagan Dhawan


Mycobacterium tuberculosis was described as ‘captain of death’ with an inherent property of multiple drug resistance majorly caused by the competent mechanism of efflux pumps. In this study, various open source tools combining chemo-informatics with bioinformatics were used for efficient in-silico drug designing. The efflux pump, Rv1218c, belonging to the ABC transporter superfamily, which is predicted to be a tetronasin-transporter in M. tuberculosis was targeted. Recent studies have shown that Rv1218c forms a complex with two more efflux pumps (Rv1219c and Rv1217c) to provide multidrug resistance to the bacterium. The 3D structure of the protein was modeled (as the structure was unavailable in the previously collected databases on this gene). The TMHMM analysis of this protein in TubercuList has shown that this protein is present in the outer membrane of the bacterium. Virtual screening of compounds from various publically available chemical libraries was performed on the M. tuberculosis protein using various open source tools. These ligands were further assessed where various physicochemical properties were evaluated and analyzed. On comparison of different physicochemical properties, toxicity and docking, the ligand 2-(hydroxymethyl)-6-[4, 5, 6-trihydroxy-2-(hydroxymethyl) tetrahydropyran-3-yl] oxy-tetrahydropyran-3, 4, 5-triol was found to be best suited for further studies.

Keywords: Molecular Docking, Drug Resistance, efflux pump, virtual screening

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4 Structure-Based Virtual Screening to Identify CLDN4 Inhibitors

Authors: Jayanthi Sivaraman


Claudins are the important components of the tight junctions that play a key role in paracellular permeability. Among various members of Claudin family, Claudin 4 (CLDN4) is found to be overexpressed in ovarian, pancreatic carcinomas and other epithelial malignancies. Therefore, in this study, an attempt has been made to identify potent inhibitors for CLDN4 from the ZINC database using virtual screening, molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulations. A well refined molecular model of CLDN4 was built using Prime of Schrodinger v10.2(Template- PDB ID: 4P79). Approximately, 6 million compounds from ZINC database are subjected to high-throughput virtual screening (HTVS) against the active site of CLDN4. Molecular docking using GLIDE predicted ARG31, ASN142, ASP146 and ARG158 as critically important residues. Furthermore, three compounds from ZINC database (ZINC96331839, ZINC36533519 and ZINC75819394) showed highly promising ADME properties and binding affinity with stable conformation. The therapeutic efficiency of these lead compounds is evaluated and confirmed by in-vitro and in-vivo studies which leads to the development of novel anti-cancer drugs.

Keywords: Molecular Docking, inhibitors, virtual screening, ADME property

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3 Discovery of New Inhibitors for Colorectal Cancer Treatment

Authors: Kai-Cheng Hsu, Tzu-Ying Sung, Jinn-Moon Yang


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the main causes of cancer death in the world. Although several drugs have been developed to treat colorectal cancer, such as Regorafenib and 5-FU, their efficacy is often limited by the development of drug resistance. Therefore, development of new drugs with new scaffolds is necessary to treat CRC. Here, we used site-moiety maps to identify inhibitors against PIM1, LIMK1, SRC, and mTOR, which are often overexpressed in CRC. A site-moiety map represents physicochemical properties and moiety preferences of a binding site through anchors. An anchor contains three elements: (1) conserved interacting residues of a binding pocket; (2) moiety preference of the binding pocket; and (3) the type (e.g., hydrogen-bonding or van der Waals interactions) of interaction between the moieties and the binding pocket. Then, we performed a structure-based virtual screening of ~260,000 compounds and selected compound candidates with high site-moiety map scores for bioassays. Among these candidates, compound 1 and compound 2 inhibited the growth of CRC cells with IC50 values of <10 μM. The experimental result of enzyme-based assays indicated that compound 1 is a dual inhibitor against PIM1 (IC50 6 μM) and LIMK1(IC50 11 μM). Compound 2 was predicted as a SRC inhibitor and will be further validated. The compounds inhibited different protein targets compared to the current drugs. We believe that the compounds provide a starting point to design new drugs for CRC treatment.

Keywords: Drug discovery, colorectal cancer, virtual screening, site-moiety map, PIM1, LIMK1

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2 Zika Virus NS5 Protein Potential Inhibitors: An Enhanced in silico Approach in Drug Discovery

Authors: Mahmoud E. S. Soliman, Pritika Ramharack


The re-emerging Zika virus is an arthropod-borne virus that has been described to have explosive potential as a worldwide pandemic. The initial transmission of the virus was through a mosquito vector, however, evolving modes of transmission has allowed the spread of the disease over continents. The virus already been linked to irreversible chronic central nervous system (CNS) conditions. The concerns of the scientific and clinical community are the consequences of Zika viral mutations, thus suggesting the urgent need for viral inhibitors. There have been large strides in vaccine development against the virus but there are still no FDA-approved drugs available. Rapid rational drug design and discovery research is fundamental in the production of potent inhibitors against the virus that will not just mask the virus, but destroy it completely. In silico drug design allows for this prompt screening of potential leads, thus decreasing the consumption of precious time and resources. This study demonstrates an optimized and proven screening technique in the discovery of two potential small molecule inhibitors of Zika virus Methyltransferase and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase. This in silico “per-residue energy decomposition pharmacophore” virtual screening approach will be critical in aiding scientists in the discovery of not only effective inhibitors of Zika viral targets, but also a wide range of anti-viral agents.

Keywords: virtual screening, Zika virus, NS5 protein inhibitors, per-residue decomposition, pharmacophore model

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1 Identification of a Lead Compound for Selective Inhibition of Nav1.7 to Treat Chronic Pain

Authors: Sharat Chandra, Zilong Wang, Ru-Rong Ji, Andrey Bortsov


Chronic pain (CP) therapeutic approaches have limited efficacy. As a result, doctors are prescribing opioids for chronic pain, leading to opioid overuse, abuse, and addiction epidemic. Therefore, the development of effective and safe CP drugs remains an unmet medical need. Voltage-gated sodium (Nav) channels act as cardiovascular and neurological disorder’s molecular targets. Nav channels selective inhibitors are hard to design because there are nine closely-related isoforms (Nav1.1-1.9) that share the protein sequence segments. We are targeting the Nav1.7 found in the peripheral nervous system and engaged in the perception of pain. The objective of this project was to screen a 1.5 million compound library for identification of inhibitors for Nav1.7 with analgesic effect. In this study, we designed a protocol for identification of isoform-selective inhibitors of Nav1.7, by utilizing the prior information on isoform-selective antagonists. First, a similarity search was performed; then the identified hits were docked into a binding site on the fourth voltage-sensor domain (VSD4) of Nav1.7. We used the FTrees tool for similarity searching and library generation; the generated library was docked in the VSD4 domain binding site using FlexX and compounds were shortlisted using a FlexX score and SeeSAR hyde scoring. Finally, the top 25 compounds were tested with molecular dynamics simulation (MDS). We reduced our list to 9 compounds based on the MDS root mean square deviation plot and obtained them from a vendor for in vitro and in vivo validation. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in HEK-293 cells and dorsal root ganglion neurons were conducted. We used patch pipettes to record transient Na⁺ currents. One of the compounds reduced the peak sodium currents in Nav1.7-HEK-293 stable cell line in a dose-dependent manner, with IC50 values at 0.74 µM. In summary, our computer-aided analgesic discovery approach allowed us to develop pre-clinical analgesic candidate with significant reduction of time and cost.

Keywords: Similarity Search, Chronic Pain, virtual screening, voltage-gated sodium channel, isoform-selective antagonist, analgesics development

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