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Bioorg Med Chem. 2005 Sep 1;13(17):5240-52.

Inhibition of the severe acute respiratory syndrome 3CL protease by peptidomimetic alpha,beta-unsaturated esters.

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Department of Chemistry, National Taiwan University, Taipei 106, Taiwan.


The proteolytic processing of polyproteins by the 3CL protease of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus is essential for the viral propagation. A series of tripeptide alpha,beta-unsaturated esters and ketomethylene isosteres, including AG7088, are synthesized and assayed to target the 3CL protease. Though AG7088 is inactive (IC50 > 100 microM), the ketomethylene isosteres and tripeptide alpha,beta-unsaturated esters containing both P1 and P2 phenylalanine residues show modest inhibitory activity (IC50 = 11-39 microM). The Phe-Phe dipeptide inhibitors 18a-e are designed on the basis of computer modeling of the enzyme-inhibitor complex. The most potent inhibitor 18c with an inhibition constant of 0.52 microM is obtained by condensation of the Phe-Phe dipeptide alpha,beta-unsaturated ester with 4-(dimethylamino)cinnamic acid. The cell-based assays also indicate that 18c is a nontoxic anti-SARS agent with an EC50 value of 0.18 microM.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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