Curreli, F., Belov, D. S., Do Kwon, Y., Ramesh, R., Furimsky, A. M., O’Loughlin, K., … & Debnath, A. K. (2018). Structure-based lead optimization to improve antiviral potency and ADMET properties of phenyl-1H-pyrrole-carboxamide entry inhibitors targeted to HIV-1 gp120. European journal of medicinal chemistry, 154, 367-391.
We are continuing our concerted effort to optimize our first lead entry antagonist, NBD-11021, which targets the Phe43 cavity of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein gp120, to improve antiviral potency and ADMET properties. In this report, we present a structure-based approach that helped us to generate working hypotheses to modify further a recently reported advanced lead entry antagonist, NBD-14107, which showed significant improvement in antiviral potency when tested in a single-cycle assay against a large panel of Env-pseudotyped viruses. We report here the synthesis of twenty-nine new compounds and evaluation of their antiviral activity in a single-cycle and multi-cycle assay to derive a comprehensive structure-activity relationship (SAR). We have selected three inhibitors with the high selectivity index for testing against a large panel of 55 Env-pseudotyped viruses representing a diverse set of clinical isolates of different subtypes. The antiviral activity of one of these potent inhibitors, 55 (NBD-14189), against some clinical isolates was as low as 63 nM. We determined the sensitivity of CD4-binding site mutated-pseudoviruses to these inhibitors to confirm that they target HIV-1 gp120. Furthermore, we assessed their ADMET properties and compared them to the clinical candidate attachment inhibitor, BMS-626529. The ADMET data indicate that some of these new inhibitors have comparable ADMET properties to BMS-626529 and can be optimized further to potential clinical candidates.