Screening for NNRTIs with Slow Dissociation and High Affinity for a Panel of HIV-1 RT Variants

01 January 2009

Elinder, M., Nordström, H. Geitmann, M., Hämäläinen, M., Vrang, L., Öberg, B. and Danielson, U.H.(2009) J. Biomol. Screen. 14: 395 – 403.

A lead optimization library consisting of 800 HIV-1 nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) was screened in parallel against 4 clinically relevant variants of HIV-1 RT (Wt, L100I, Y181C, and K103N) using a surface plasmon resonance—based biosensor. The aim was to identify inhibitors suitable in specific topical microbicides efficient for preventing the transmission of a range of clinically significant strains of HIV-1. The authors hypothesized that such compounds should have high affinity and slow dissociation rates for multiple variants of the target. To efficiently analyze the large amount of real-time data (sensorgrams) that were generated in the screening, they initially used signals from 3 selected time points to identify compounds with high affinity and slow dissociation for the complete panel of enzyme variants. Hits were confirmed by visually inspecting the complete sensorgrams. Two structurally unrelated compounds fulfilled the hit criteria, but only 1 compound was found to (a) compete with a known NNRTI for binding to the NNRTI site, (b) inhibit HIV-1 RT activity, and (c) inhibit HIV-1 replication in cell culture, for all 4 enzyme variants. This novel screening methodology offers high-resolution real-time kinetic data for multiple targets in parallel. It is expected to have broad applicability for the discovery of compounds with defined kinetic profiles, crucial for optimal therapeutic effects.

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