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J Inherit Metab Dis. 2012 May;35(3):495-503. doi: 10.1007/s10545-011-9409-2. Epub 2011 Oct 28.

Fluorous iminoalditols act as effective pharmacological chaperones against gene products from GLB₁ alleles causing GM1-gangliosidosis and Morquio B disease.

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Department of Pediatrics, Medical University of Graz, Graz, Austria.


Unlike replacement therapy by infusion of exogenous recombinant lysosomal enzymes, pharmacological chaperones aim at a gain of function of endogenous gene products. Deficits resulting from missense mutations may become treatable by small, competitive inhibitors binding to the catalytical site and thus correcting the erroneous conformation of mutant enzymes. This may prevent their premature degradation and normalize intracellular trafficking as well as biological half-life. A major limitation currently arises from the huge number of individual missense mutations and the lack of knowledge on the structural requirements for specific interaction with mutant protein domains. Our previous work on mutations of the β-galactosidase (β-gal) gene, causing GM1 gangliosidosis (GM1) and Morquio B disease (MBD), respectively, characterized clinical phenotypes as well as biosynthesis, intracellular transport and subcellular localization of mutants. We recently identified an effective chaperone, DL-HexDGJ (Methyl 6-{[N(2)-(dansyl)-N(6)-(1,5-dideoxy-D-galactitol-1,5-diyl)- L-lysyl]amino} hexanoate), among a series of N-modified 1-deoxygalactonojirimycin derivatives carrying a dansyl group in its N-acyl moiety. Using novel and flexible synthetic routes, we now report on the effects of two oligofluoroalkyl-derivatives of 1-deoxygalactonojirimycin, Ph(TFM)(2)OHex-DGJ (N-(α,α-di-trifluoromethyl) benzyloxyhexyl-1,5-dideoxy-1,5-imino-D: -galactitol) and (TFM)(3)OHex-DGJ (N-(Nonafluoro-tert-butyloxy)hexyl-1,5-dideoxy-1,5-imino-D: -galactitol) on the β-gal activity of GM1 and MBD fibroblasts. Both compounds are competitive inhibitors and increase the residual enzyme activities up to tenfold over base line activity in GM1 fibroblasts with chaperone-sensitive mutations. Western blots showed that this was due to a normalization of protein transport and intralysosomal maturation. The fact that the novel compounds were effective at very low concentrations (0.5-10 μM) in the cell culture medium as well as their novel chemical character suggest future testing in animal models. This may contribute to new aspects for efficient and personalized small molecule treatment of lysosomal storage diseases.

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