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J Med Chem. 2017 Oct 12;60(19):7965-7983. doi: 10.1021/acs.jmedchem.7b00467. Epub 2017 Sep 21.

Small Molecule Inhibitors Simultaneously Targeting Cancer Metabolism and Epigenetics: Discovery of Novel Nicotinamide Phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT) and Histone Deacetylase (HDAC) Dual Inhibitors.

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School of Pharmacy, Second Military Medical University , 325 Guohe Road, Shanghai 200433, People's Republic of China.
MOE Key Laboratory of Protein Sciences, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Tsinghua University , Beijing 100084, People's Republic of China.


Cancer metabolism and epigenetics are among the most intensely pursued research areas in anticancer drug discovery. Here we report the first small molecules that simultaneously inhibit nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT) and histone deacetylase (HDAC), two important targets of cancer metabolism and epigenetics, respectively. Through iterative structure-based drug design, chemical synthesis, and biological assays, a highly potent dual NAMPT and HDAC inhibitor was successfully identified. Compound 35 possessed excellent and balanced activities against both NAMPT (IC50 = 31 nM) and HDAC1 (IC50 = 55 nM). It could effectively induce cell apoptosis and autophagy and ultimately led to cell death. Importantly, compound 35 showed excellent in vivo antitumor efficacy in the HCT116 xenograft model. This proof-of-concept study demonstrates the feasibility of discovering an inhibitor targeting cancer metabolism and epigenetics and provides an efficient strategy for multitarget antitumor drug discovery.

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