Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) is linked to Parkinson’s disease and may represent an attractive therapeutic target. Here we report a 2,4-dianilino-5-chloro-pyrimidine, TAE684, a previously reported inhibitor of anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK), is also a potent inhibitor of LRRK2 kinase activity (IC50 of 7.8 nM against wild-type LRRK2, 6.1 nM against the G2019S mutant). TAE684 substantially inhibits Ser910 and Ser935 phosphorylation of both wild-type LRRK2 and G2019S mutant at a concentration of 0.1–0.3 µM in cells and in mouse spleen and kidney, but not in brain, following oral doses of 10 mg/kg.
Parkinson’s disease; LRRK2; TAE684
Tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI)-treated acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients commonly show rapid and significant peripheral blood blast cell reduction, however a marginal decrease in bone marrow blasts. This suggests a protective environment and highlights the demand for a better understanding of stromal:leukemia cell communication. As a strategy to improve clinical efficacy, we searched for novel agents capable of potentiating the stroma-diminished effects of TKI treatment of mutant FLT3-expressing cells.
We designed a combinatorial high throughput drug screen using well-characterized kinase inhibitor-focused libraries to identify novel kinase inhibitors capable of overriding stromal-mediated resistance to TKIs, such as PKC412 and AC220. Standard liquid culture proliferation assays, cell cycle and apoptosis analysis, and immunoblotting were carried out with cell lines or primary AML to validate putative candidates from the screen and characterize the mechanism(s) underlying observed synergy.
Results and Conclusions
Our study led to the observation of synergy between selective Akt inhibitors and FLT3 inhibitors against mutant FLT3-positive AML in either the absence or presence of stroma. Our findings are consistent with evidence that Akt activation is characteristic of mutant FLT3-transformed cells, as well as observed residual Akt activity following FLT3 inhibitor treatment. In conclusion, our study highlights the potential importance of Akt as a signaling factor in leukemia survival, and supports the use of the co-culture chemical screen to identify agents able to potentiate TKI anti-leukemia activity in a cytoprotective microenvironment.
The mitogen activated kinases JNK1/2/3 are key enzymes in signaling modules that transduce and integrate extracellular stimuli into coordinated cellular response. Here we report the discovery of the first irreversible inhibitors of JNK1/2/3. We describe two JNK3 co-crystal structures at 2.60 and 2.97 Å resolutions that show the compounds form covalent bonds with a conserved cysteine residue. JNK-IN-8 is a selective JNK inhibitor that inhibits phosphorylation of c-Jun, a direct substrate of JNK kinase, in cells exposed to sub-micromolar drug in a manner that depends on covalent modification of the conserved cysteine residue. Extensive biochemical, cellular and pathway-based profiling establish the selectivity of JNK-IN-8 for JNK and suggest that the compound will be broadly useful as a pharmacological probe of JNK-dependent signal transduction. Potential lead compounds have also been identified for kinases including IRAK1, PIK3C3, PIP4K2C, and PIP5K3.
The members of the Aurora kinase family play critical roles in the regulation of the cell cycle and mitotic spindle assembly and have been intensively investigated as potential targets for a new class of anti-cancer drugs. We describe a new highly potent and selective class of Aurora kinase inhibitors discovered using a phenotypic cellular screen. Optimized inhibitors display many of the hallmarks of Aurora inhibition including endoreduplication, polyploidy, and loss of cell viability in cancer cells. Structure-activity relationships with respect to kinome-wide selectivity and guided by an Aurora B co-crystal structure resulted in the identification of key selectivity determinants and discovery of a sub-series with selectivity towards Aurora A. A direct comparison of biochemical and cellular profile with respect to published Aurora inhibitors including VX-680, AZD1152, MLN8054, and a pyrimidine-based compound from Genentech demonstrates that compounds 1 and 3 will become valuable additional pharmacological probes of Aurora dependent functions.
ADP-ribosylation factor 1 (Arf1) plays a critical role in regulating secretory traffic and membrane transport within the Golgi of eukaryotic cells. Arf1 is activated by guanine nucleotide exchange factors (ArfGEFs) which confer spatial and temporal specificity to vesicular transport. We describe here the discovery and characterization of Golgicide A (GCA), a potent, highly specific, and reversible inhibitor of the cis-Golgi ArfGEF, GBF1. Inhibition of GBF1 function resulted in rapid dissociation of COPI vesicle coat from Golgi membranes and subsequent disassembly of the Golgi and trans-Golgi network (TGN). Secretion of soluble and membrane-associated proteins was arrested at the ER-Golgi intermediate compartment, whereas endocytosis and recycling of transferrin was unaffected by GBF1 inhibition. Internalized shiga toxin was arrested within the endocytic compartment and was unable to reach the dispersed TGN. Collectively, these results highlight the central role for GBF1 in coordinating bidirectional transport and maintaining structural integrity of the Golgi.
The mTOR Complex 1 (mTORC1) kinase nucleates a pathway that promotes cell growth and proliferation and is the target of rapamycin, a drug with many clinical uses1. mTORC1 regulates mRNA translation, but the overall translational program is poorly defined and no unifying model exists to explain how mTORC1 differentially controls the translation of specific mRNAs. Here we use high-resolution transcriptome-scale ribosome profiling to monitor translation in cells acutely treated with the mTOR inhibitor Torin1, which, unlike rapamycin, fully inhibits mTORC12. These data reveal a surprisingly simple view of the mRNA features and mechanisms that confer mTORC1-dependent translation control. The subset of mRNAs that are specifically regulated by mTORC1 consists almost entirely of transcripts with established 5′ terminal oligopyrimidine (TOP) motifs, or, like Hsp90ab1 and Ybx1, with previously unrecognized TOP or related TOP-like motifs that we identified. We find no evidence to support proposals that mTORC1 preferentially regulates mRNAs with increased 5′ UTR length or complexity3. mTORC1 phosphorylates a myriad of translational regulators, but how it controls TOP mRNA translation is unknown4. Remarkably, loss of just the well-characterized mTORC1 substrates, the 4E-BP family of translational repressors, is sufficient to render TOP and TOP-like mRNA translation resistant to Torin1. The 4E-BPs inhibit translation initiation by interfering with the interaction between the cap-binding protein eIF4E and eIF4G1. Loss of this interaction diminishes the capacity of eIF4E to bind TOP and TOP-like mRNAs much more than other mRNAs, explaining why mTOR inhibition selectively suppresses their translation. Our results clarify the translational program controlled by mTORC1 and identify 4E-BPs and eIF4G1 as its master effectors.
Anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), including crizotinib, are effective treatments in preclinical models and in cancer patients with ALK-translocated cancers. However, their efficacy will ultimately be limited by the development of acquired drug resistance. Here we report two mechanisms of ALK TKI resistance identified from, a crizotinib treated non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patient and in a cell line generated from the resistant tumor (DFCI076), and from studying a resistant version of the ALK TKI (TAE684) sensitive H3122 cell line. The crizotinib resistant DFCI076 cell line, harboured a unique L1152R ALK secondary mutation, and was also resistant to the structurally unrelated ALK TKI TAE684. Although the DFCI076 cell line was still partially dependent on ALK for survival, it also contained concurrent co-activation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signalling. In contrast, the TAE684 resistant (TR3) H3122 cell line did not contain an ALK secondary mutation but instead harboured co-activation of EGFR signalling. Dual inhibition of both ALK and EGFR was the most effective therapeutic strategy for the DFCI076 and H3122 TR3 cell lines. We further identified a subset (3/50; 6%) of treatment naïve NSCLC patients with ALK rearrangements that also had concurrent EGFR activating mutations. Our studies identify resistance mechanisms to ALK TKIs mediated by both ALK and by a bypass signalling pathway mediated by EGFR. These mechanisms can occur independently, or in the same cancer, suggesting that the combination of both ALK and EGFR inhibitors may represent an effective therapy for these subsets of NSCLC patients.
Non-small cell lung carcinoma; translocation; kinase inhibitor; drug resistance; mutation
Selective protein kinase inhibitors have only been developed against a small number of kinase targets. Here we demonstrate that “high-throughput kinase profiling” is an efficient method for the discovery of lead compounds for established as well as unexplored kinase targets. We screened a library of 118 compounds constituting two distinct scaffolds (furan-thiazolidinediones and pyrimido-diazepines) against a panel of 353 kinases. A distinct kinase selectivity profile was observed for each scaffold. Selective inhibitors were identified with submicromolar cellular activity against PIM1, ERK5, ACK1, MPS1/PLK1–3 and Aurora A,B kinases. In addition, we identified potent inhibitors for so far unexplored kinases such as DRAK1, HIPK2 and DCAMKL1 that await further evaluation. This inhibitor-centric approach permits comprehensive assessment of a scaffold of interest and represents an efficient and general strategy for identifying new selective kinase inhibitors.
K-RAS mutation poses a particularly difficult problem for cancer therapy. Activating mutations in K-RAS are common in cancers of the lung, pancreas, and colon and are associated with poor response to therapy. As such, targeted therapies that abrogate K-RAS-induced oncogenicity would be of tremendous value.
We searched for small molecule kinase inhibitors that preferentially affect the growth of colorectal cancer cells expressing mutant K-RAS. The mechanism of action of one inhibitor was explored using chemical and genetic approaches.
We identified BAY61-3606 as an inhibitor of proliferation in colorectal cancer cells expressing mutant forms of K-RAS, but not in isogenic cells expressing wild-type K-RAS. In addition to its anti-proliferative effects in mutant cells, BAY61-3606 exhibited a distinct biological property in wild-type cells in that it conferred sensitivity to inhibition of RAF. In this context, BAY61-3606 acted by inhibiting MAP4K2 (GCK), which normally activates NFκβ signaling in wild-type cells in response to inhibition of RAF. As a result of MAP4K2 inhibition, wild-type cells became sensitive to AZ-628, a RAF inhibitor, when also treated with BAY61-3606.
These studies indicate that BAY61-3606 exerts distinct biological activities in different genetic contexts.
Protein kinases are intensely studied mediators of cellular signaling, yet important questions remain regarding their regulation and in vivo properties. Here we use a probe-based chemoprotemics platform to profile several well studied kinase inhibitors against more than 200 kinases in native cell proteomes and reveal new biological targets for some of these inhibitors. Several striking differences were identified between native and recombinant kinase inhibitory profiles, in particular, for the Raf kinases. The native kinase binding profiles presented here closely mirror the cellular activity of these inhibitors, even when the inhibition profiles differ dramatically from recombinant assay results. Additionally, Raf activation events could be detected upon live cell treatment with inhibitors. These studies highlight the complexities of protein kinase behavior in the cellular context and demonstrate that profiling with only recombinant/purified enzymes can be misleading.
Mutations in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) are strongly associated with late-onset autosomal dominant Parkinson's disease. LRRK2 is highly expressed in immune cells and recent work points towards a link between LRRK2 and innate immunity. Here we demonstrate that stimulation of the Toll-Like Receptor (TLR) pathway by MyD88-dependent agonists in bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMDMs) or RAW264.7 macrophages induces marked phosphorylation of LRRK2 at Ser910 and Ser935, the phosphorylation sites that regulate the binding of 14-3-3 to LRRK2. Phosphorylation of these residues is prevented by knock-out of MyD88 in BMDMs, but not the alternative TLR adaptor protein TRIF. Utilising both pharmacological inhibitors, including a new TAK1 inhibitor, NG25, and genetic models, we provide evidence that both the canonical (IKKα and IKKβ) and IKK-related (IKKε and TBK1) kinases mediate TLR agonist induced phosphorylation of LRRK2 in vivo. Moreover, all four IKK members directly phosphorylate LRRK2 at Ser910 and Ser935 in vitro. Consistent with previous work describing Ser910 and Ser935 as pharmacodynamic biomarkers of LRRK2 activity, we find that the TLR independent basal phosphorylation of LRRK2 at Ser910 and Ser935 is abolished following treatment of macrophages with LRRK2 kinase inhibitors. However, the increased phosphorylation of Ser910 and Ser935 induced by activation of the MyD88 pathway is insensitive to LRRK2 kinase inhibitors. Finally, employing LRRK2-deficient BMDMs, we present data indicating that LRRK2 does not play a major role in regulating the secretion of inflammatory cytokines induced by activation of the MyD88 pathway. Our findings provide the first direct link between LRRK2 and the IKKs that mediate many immune responses. Further work is required to uncover the physiological roles that phosphorylation of LRRK2 by IKKs play in controlling macrophage biology and to determine how phosphorylation of LRRK2 by IKKs impacts upon the use of Ser910 and Ser935 as pharmacodynamic biomarkers.
The mTOR mediated PI3K/AKT/mTOR signal transduction pathway has been demonstrated to play a key role in a broad spectrum of cancers. Starting from the mTOR selective inhibitor 1 (Torin1), a focused medicinal chemistry effort led to the discovery of an improved mTOR inhibitor 3 (Torin2), which possesses an EC50 of 0.25 nM for inhibiting cellular mTOR activity. Compound 3 exhibited 800-fold selectivity over PI3K (EC50: 200 nM) and over 100-fold binding selectivity relative to 440 other protein kinases. Compound 3 has significantly improved bioavailability (54%), metabolic stability and plasma exposure relative to compound 1.
PIK3CA gain-of-function mutations are a common oncogenic event in human malignancy1–4, making PI3K an attractive target for cancer therapy. Despite the great promise of targeted therapy, resistance often develops, resulting in treatment failure. To elucidate mechanisms of resistance to PI3K-targeted therapy, we constructed a mouse model of breast cancer conditionally expressing human PIK3CAH1047R. Surprisingly, most PIK3CAH1047R-driven mammary tumors recurred following PIK3CAH1047R inactivation. Genomic analyses of recurrent tumors revealed multiple lesions, including focal amplification of c-Met or c-Myc. While c-Met amplification allowed tumor survival dependent on activation of endogenous PI3K, tumors with c-Myc amplification became independent of the PI3K pathway. Functional analyses demonstrated that c-Myc contributed to oncogene independence and resistance to PI3K inhibition. Importantly, PI3KCA mutations and increased c-MYC levels co-occur in a substantial fraction of human breast tumors. Together, these data suggest that c-MYC elevation represents a potential mechanism by which tumors develop resistance to current PI3K-targeted therapies.
Mutations in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) are strongly associated with late-onset autosomal dominant Parkinson’s disease. We employed a novel, parallel, compound-centric approach to identify a potent and selective LRRK2 inhibitor LRRK2-IN-1, and demonstrated that inhibition of LRRK2 induces dephosphorylation of Ser910/Ser935 and accumulation of LRRK2 within aggregate structures. LRRK2-IN-1 will serve as a versatile tool to pharmacologically interrogate LRRK2 biology and study its role in Parkinson’s disease.
Targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor kinase (EGFR) with ATP-competitive kinase inhibitors results in dramatic but short-lived responses in patients with EGFR mutant non small cell lung cancer. A series of novel covalent EGFR kinase inhibitors with selectivity for the clinically relevant T790M “gatekeeper” resistance mutation relative to wild-type EGFR were discovered by library screening. A representative compound 3i was obtained through a systematic SAR study guided by mutant EGFR-dependent cellular proliferation assays.
The ALK kinase inhibitor crizotinib (PF-02341066) is clinically effective in patients with ALK-translocated cancers, but its efficacy will ultimately be limited by acquired drug resistance. Here we report the identification of a secondary mutation in ALK, F1174L, as one cause of crizotinib resistance in a patient with an inflammatory myofibroblastic tumor (IMT) harbouring a RANBP2-ALK translocation who progressed while crizotinib therapy. When present in cis with an ALK translocation, this mutation (also detected in neuroblastomas) causes an increase in ALK phosphorylation, cell growth and downstream signaling. Furthermore, the F1174L mutation inhibits crizotinib mediated downregulation of ALK signaling and blocks apoptosis in RANBP2-ALK Ba/F3 cells. A chemically distinct ALK inhibitor, TAE684, or the HSP90 inhibitor 17-AAG are both effective in models harbouring the F1174L ALK mutation. Our findings highlight the importance of studying drug resistance mechanisms in order to develop effective clinical treatments for patients with ALK-translocated cancers.
Inflammatory myofibroblastic tumor; Anaplastic lymphoma kinase; kinase inhibitor; drug resistance
Genetic rearrangements of the anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) kinase occur in 3% to 13% of non–small cell lung cancer patients and rarely coexist with KRAS or EGFR mutations. To evaluate potential treatment strategies for lung cancers driven by an activated EML4-ALK chimeric oncogene, we generated a genetically engineered mouse model that phenocopies the human disease where this rearranged gene arises. In this model, the ALK kinase inhibitor TAE684 produced greater tumor regression and improved overall survival compared with carboplatin and paclitaxel, representing clinical standard of care. 18F-FDG-PET-CT scans revealed almost complete inhibition of tumor metabolic activity within 24 hours of TAE684 exposure. In contrast, combined inhibition of the PI3K/AKT and MEK/ERK1/2 pathways did not result in significant tumor regression. We identified EML4-ALK in complex with multiple cellular chaperones including HSP90. In support of a functional reliance, treatment with geldanamycin-based HSP90 inhibitors resulted in rapid degradation of EML4-ALK in vitro and substantial, albeit transient, tumor regression in vivo. Taken together, our findings define a murine model that offers a reliable platform for the preclinical comparison of combinatorial treatment approaches for lung cancer characterized by ALK rearrangement.
The mTOR protein kinase is a master growth promoter that nucleates two complexes, mTORC1 and mTORC2. Despite the diverse processes controlled by mTOR, few substrates are known. We defined the mTOR-regulated phosphoproteome by quantitative mass spectrometry and characterized the primary sequence motif specificity of mTOR using positional scanning peptide libraries. We found that the phosphorylation response to insulin is largely mTOR-dependent and that mTOR exhibits a unique preference for proline, hydrophobic, and aromatic residues at the +1 position. The adaptor protein Grb10 was identified as an mTORC1 substrate that mediates the inhibition of PI3K typical of cells lacking TSC2, a tumor suppressor and negative regulator of mTORC1. Our work clarifies how mTORC1 inhibits growth factor signaling and opens new areas of investigation in mTOR biology.
BMK1 is activated by mitogens and oncogenic signals and, thus, is strongly implicated in tumorigenesis. We found that BMK1 interacted with promyelocytic leukemia protein (PML), and inhibited its tumor-suppressor function through phosphorylation. Furthermore, activated BMK1 notably inhibited PML-dependent activation of p21. To further investigate the BMK-mediated inhibition of the tumor suppressor activity of PML in tumor cells, we developed a small-molecule inhibitor of the kinase activity of BMK1, XMD8-92. Inhibition of BMK1 by XMD8-92 blocked tumor cell proliferation in vitro and significantly inhibited tumor growth in vivo by 95%, demonstrating the efficacy and tolerability of BMK1-targeted cancer treatment in animals.
A series of alkyne containing type II inhibitors with potent inhibitory activity of T315I Bcr-Abl has been identified. The most active compound 4 exhibits an EC50 of less than 1 nM against wild-type Bcr-Abl and an EC50 of 10 nM against T315I mutant but is broadly active against a number of other kinases.
Polo-like kinases (PLKs) play an important role in cell cycle progression, checkpoint control and mitosis. The high mitotic index and chromosomal instability of advanced cancers suggest that PLK inhibitors may be an attractive therapeutic option for presently incurable advanced neoplasias with systemic involvement, such as multiple myeloma (MM). We studied the PLK 1, 2, 3 inhibitor BI 2536 and observed potent (IC50<40 nM) and rapid (commitment to cell death <24 hrs) in vitro activity against MM cells in isolation, as well as in vivo activity against a traditional subcutaneous xenograft mouse model. Tumor cells in MM patients, however, don't exist in isolation, but reside in and interact with the bone microenvironment. Therefore conventional in vitro and in vivo preclinical assays don't take into account how interactions between MM cells and the bone microenvironment can potentially confer drug resistance. To probe this question, we performed tumor cell compartment-specific bioluminescence imaging assays to compare the preclinical anti-MM activity of BI 2536 in vitro in the presence vs. absence of stromal cells or osteoclasts. We observed that the presence of these bone marrow non-malignant cells led to decreased anti-MM activity of BI 2536. We further validated these results in an orthotopic in vivo mouse model of diffuse MM bone lesions where tumor cells interact with non-malignant cells of the bone microenvironment. We again observed that BI 2536 had decreased activity in this in vivo model of tumor-bone microenvironment interactions highlighting that, despite BI 2536's promising activity in conventional assays, its lack of activity in microenvironmental models raises concerns for its clinical development for MM. More broadly, preclinical drug testing in the absence of relevant tumor microenvironment interactions may overestimate potential clinical activity, thus explaining at least in part the gap between preclinical vs. clinical efficacy in MM and other cancers.
Squamous cell lung carcinomas account for approximately 25% of new lung carcinoma cases and 40,000 deaths per year in the United States. Although there are multiple genomically targeted therapies for lung adenocarcinoma, none has yet been reported in squamous cell lung carcinoma.
Using SNP array analysis, we found that a region of chromosome segment 8p11-12 containing three genes–WHSC1L1, LETM2, and FGFR1–is amplified in 3% of lung adenocarcinomas and 21% of squamous cell lung carcinomas. Furthermore, we demonstrated that a non-small cell lung carcinoma cell line harboring focal amplification of FGFR1 is dependent on FGFR1 activity for cell growth, as treatment of this cell line either with FGFR1-specific shRNAs or with FGFR small molecule enzymatic inhibitors leads to cell growth inhibition.
These studies show that FGFR1 amplification is common in squamous cell lung cancer, and that FGFR1 may represent a promising therapeutic target in non-small cell lung cancer.
The fibroblast growth factor receptor tyrosine kinases (FGFR1, 2, 3, and 4) represent promising therapeutic targets in a number of cancers. We have developed the first potent and selective irreversible inhibitor of FGFR1, 2, 3, and 4 which we named FIIN-1 that forms a covalent bond with cysteine 486 located in the P-loop of the FGFR1 ATP-binding site. We demonstrate that the inhibitor potently inhibits Tel-FGFR1 transformed Ba/F3 cells (EC50 = 14 nM) as well as numerous FGFR-dependent cancer cell lines. A biotin-derivatized version of the inhibitor, FIIN-1-biotin, was shown to covalently label FGFR1 at Cys486. FIIN-1 is a useful probe of FGFR-dependent cellular phenomena and may provide a starting point of the development of therapeutically relevant irreversible inhibitors of wild-type and drug-resistant forms of FGFR kinases.
The MET receptor tyrosine kinase has been implicated in several solid tumor settings, with MET gene amplification present in a subset of patients with epithelial tumors, including non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). MET gene amplification also appears to underlie acquired resistance to EGFR kinase inhibitor therapy in ~20% of NSCLC patients that initially respond to such treatment. In vitro studies have demonstrated that cancer cells harboring MET amplification demonstrate striking sensitivity to small molecule selective MET kinase inhibitors, prompting efforts to evaluate such inhibitors in clinical trials. Previous experience with kinase-targeted therapeutics such as the selective tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) imatinib and erlotinib, in chronic myeloid leukemia and NSCLC, respectively, has revealed that most treatment-responsive patients eventually relapse with drug-resistant disease. Here, we have modeled acquired resistance to the investigational MET kinase inhibitor PF2341066 in MET-amplified NSCLC cell lines to identify specific drug resistance mechanisms that are anticipated in the course of clinical development. Through this analysis, we identified EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) pathway engagement as a PF2341066 resistance mechanism in MET-amplified cells following prolonged drug exposure. While combined inhibition of MET and EGFR kinases in MET-dependent NSCLC cells did not detectably enhance their acute PF2341066 sensitivity, this combination dramatically suppressed the eventual emergence of drug-resistant clones following prolonged exposure. Conversely, activating the EGFR pathway with the receptor ligand EGF increased the yield of PF2341066-resistant clones, confirming the significance of this pathway in conferring resistance to MET TKIs. These findings further support an intimate relationship between EGFR and MET signaling pathways in NSCLC, and suggest that a combination treatment strategy with MET and EGFR kinase inhibitors may be beneficial in MET-amplified NSCLC.
MET; EGFR; TKI resistance; cross-talk; acquired drug resistance
Kinome-wide selectivity profiling of a collection of 2-amino-pyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidines followed by cellular structure−activity relationship-guided optimization resulted in the identification of moderately potent and selective inhibitors of BMK1/ERK5 exemplified by 11, 18, and 21. For example, 11 possesses a dissociation constant (Kd) for BMK1 of 19 nM, a cellular IC50 for inhibiting epidermal growth factor induced BMK1 autophosphorylation of 0.19 ± 0.04 μM, and an Ambit KINOMEscan selectivity score (S5) of 0.035. Inhibitors 18 and 21 are also potent BMK1 inhibitors and possess favorable pharmacokinetic properties which enable their use as pharmacological probes of BMK1-dependent phenomena as well as starting points for further optimization efforts.
MAPK; BMK1; ERK5