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J Med Chem. 2005 Nov 17;48(23):7215-22.

Synthesis of N-{4-[(2,4-diamino-5-methyl-4,7-dihydro-3H-pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidin-6-yl)thio]benzoyl}-L-glutamic acid and N-{4-[(2-amino-4-oxo-5-methyl-4,7-dihydro-3H-pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidin-6-yl)thio]benzoyl}-L-glutamic acid as dual inhibitors of dihydrofolate reductase and thymidylate synthase and as potential antitumor agents.

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Division of Medicinal Chemistry, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Duquesne University, 600 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15282, USA.


Two novel classical antifolates N-{4-[(2,4-diamino-5-methyl-4,7-dihydro-3H-pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidin-6-yl)thio]benzoyl}-L-glutamic acid 3 and N-{4-[(2-amino-4-oxo-5-methyl-4,7-dihydro-3H-pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidin-6-yl)thio]benzoyl}-L-glutamic acid 4 were designed, synthesized, and evaluated as antitumor agents. Compounds 3 and 4 were obtained from 2,4-diamino-5-methylpyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidine 7 and 2-amino-4-oxo-5-methylpyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidine 12, respectively, in a concise three-step sequence. Compound 3 is the first example, to our knowledge, of a 2,4-diamino classical antifolate that has potent inhibitory activity against both human dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) and human thymidylate synthase (TS). Compound 4 was a dual DHFR-TS inhibitor against the bifunctional enzyme derived from Toxoplasma gondii (tg). Further evaluation of the mechanism of action of 3 implicated DHFR as its primary intracellular target. Both 3 and 4 were folylpolyglutamate synthetase (FPGS) substrates. Compound 3 also inhibited the growth of several human tumor cell lines in culture with GI50 < 10(-8) M. This study shows that the pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidine scaffold is conducive to dual DHFR-TS and tumor inhibitory activity, and the potency is determined by the 4-position substituent.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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