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Chem Biol. 2012 Jan 27;19(1):140-54. doi: 10.1016/j.chembiol.2011.11.010.

Discovery of potent and selective covalent inhibitors of JNK.

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  • 1Department of Cancer Biology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


The mitogen-activated kinases JNK1/2/3 are key enzymes in signaling modules that transduce and integrate extracellular stimuli into coordinated cellular response. Here, we report the discovery of irreversible inhibitors of JNK1/2/3. We describe two JNK3 cocrystal structures at 2.60 and 2.97 Å resolution that show the compounds form covalent bonds with a conserved cysteine residue. JNK-IN-8 is a selective JNK inhibitor that inhibits phosphorylation of c-Jun, a direct substrate of JNK, in cells exposed to submicromolar drug in a manner that depends on covalent modification of the conserved cysteine residue. Extensive biochemical, cellular, and pathway-based profiling establish the selectivity of JNK-IN-8 for JNK and suggests that the compound will be broadly useful as a pharmacological probe of JNK-dependent signal transduction. Potential lead compounds have also been identified for kinases, including IRAK1, PIK3C3, PIP4K2C, and PIP5K3.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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