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J Med Chem. 2009 Jan 8;52(1):197-205. doi: 10.1021/jm801165r.

New derivatives of farnesylthiosalicylic acid (salirasib) for cancer treatment: farnesylthiosalicylamide inhibits tumor growth in nude mice models.

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  • 1Department of Neurobiology, The George S Wise Faculty of Life Sciences, Tel-Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.


The Ras inhibitor S-trans,trans-farnesylthiosalicylic acid (FTS, Salirasib) interferes with Ras membrane interactions that are crucial for Ras-dependent transformation. It remains unknown whether modifications of the carboxyl group of FTS can affect its activity. Here we show that specific modifications of the FTS carboxyl group by esterification or amidation yield compounds with improved growth inhibitory activity, compared to FTS, as shown in Panc-1 and U87 cells. The most potent compounds were FTS-methoxymethyl ester and FTS-amide. However, selectivity toward active Ras-GTP, as known for FTS, was apparent with the amide derivatives of FTS. FTS-amide exhibited the overall highest efficacy in inhibition of Ras-GTP and cell growth. This new compound significantly inhibited growth of both Panc-1 tumors and U87 brain tumors. Thus amide derivatives of the FTS carboxyl group provide potent cell-growth inhibitors without loss of selectivity toward the active Ras protein and may serve as new candidates in cancer therapy.

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