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J Comput Aided Mol Des. 2015 Feb;29(2):155-63. doi: 10.1007/s10822-014-9811-6. Epub 2014 Nov 7.

Identification of antipsychotic drug fluspirilene as a potential p53-MDM2 inhibitor: a combined computational and experimental study.

Author information

1
NanoBio Laboratory, Department of Chemical Engineering, Widener University, Chester, PA, 19013, USA, spatil@widener.edu.

Abstract

The inhibition of tumor suppressor p53 protein due to its direct interaction with oncogenic murine double minute 2 (MDM2) protein, plays a central role in almost 50 % of all human tumor cells. Therefore, pharmacological inhibition of the p53-binding pocket on MDM2, leading to p53 activation, presents an important therapeutic target against these cancers expressing wild-type p53. In this context, the present study utilized an integrated virtual and experimental screening approach to screen a database of approved drugs for potential p53-MDM2 interaction inhibitors. Specifically, using an ensemble rigid-receptor docking approach with four MDM2 protein crystal structures, six drug molecules were identified as possible p53-MDM2 inhibitors. These drug molecules were then subjected to further molecular modeling investigation through flexible-receptor docking followed by Prime/MM-GBSA binding energy analysis. These studies identified fluspirilene, an approved antipsychotic drug, as a top hit with MDM2 binding mode and energy similar to that of a native MDM2 crystal ligand. The molecular dynamics simulations suggested stable binding of fluspirilene to the p53-binding pocket on MDM2 protein. The experimental testing of fluspirilene showed significant growth inhibition of human colon tumor cells in a p53-dependent manner. Fluspirilene also inhibited growth of several other human tumor cell lines in the NCI60 cell line panel. Taken together, these computational and experimental data suggest a potentially novel role of fluspirilene in inhibiting the p53-MDM2 interaction. It is noteworthy here that fluspirilene has a long history of safe human use, thus presenting immediate clinical potential as a cancer therapeutic. Furthermore, fluspirilene could also serve as a structurally-novel lead molecule for the development of more potent, small-molecule p53-MDM2 inhibitors against several types of cancer. Importantly, the combined computational and experimental screening protocol presented in this study may also prove useful for screening other commercially-available compound databases for identification of novel, small molecule p53-MDM2 inhibitors.

PMID:
25377899
DOI:
10.1007/s10822-014-9811-6
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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