Exploring 2-methyl–substituted vitamin K3 derivatives with potent inhibitory activity against the 3CL protease of SARS-CoV-2

Ryohto Koharazawa, Mayu Hayakawa, Kazuki Takeda, Kotone Miyazaki, Chisato Tode, Yoshihisa Hirota, Yoshitomo Suhara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Since the outbreak of the pandemic, various anti-SARS-CoV-2 drugs have been developed. In particular, 3CL protease (3C-like protease, 3CLpro) is an attractive drug target because it is an essential enzyme for viral multiplication and is present only in viruses, not in humans. To date, 3CLpro inhibitors against SARS-CoV-2 such as nirmatrelvir and ensitrelvir have been launched as oral drugs in Japan, but there is still no potent drug against SARS-CoV-2, due to issues of in vivo absorption and stability. Recently, vitamin K3 was reported to show inhibitory activity against 3CLpro of SARS-CoV-2, and the mechanism of action was predicted to be the formation of a covalent bond between the thiol group of cysteine 145, the active center of 3CLpro, and the C-3 position of vitamin K3. Therefore, we synthesized derivatives in which the 2-methyl group of the vitamin K3 was systematically converted to other substituents and examined their inhibitory activity against 3CLpro of SARS-CoV-2. The results showed that the compounds with the sulfide structure showed an approximately 4-fold increase in activity over vitamin K3. These results indicated the possibility of creating new inhibitors based on vitamin K3 and its derivatives.

Original languageEnglish
Article number129642
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters
Volume100
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2024 Mar 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry

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