Phyllium westwoodii is a species of phasmid insect (Order Phasmatodea) in the more specific group known as leaf insects (Family Phylliidae). These rather large and ornate creatures are known for their morphological resemblance to plant leaves for camouflage. Pyrazines are a common class of compounds used or produced by a wide variety of organisms, even humans. When an individual of P. westwoodii is disturbed, it sprays an opaque liquid from a pair of prothoracic glands which are utilized by other phasmid species for defense. The current study has found that this liquid contains glucose and a mixture of 3-isobutyl-2,5-dimethylpyrazine, 2,5-dimethyl-3-(2-methylbutyl)pyrazine, and 2,5-dimethyl-3-(3-methylbutyl)pyrazine. This is the first report of pyrazines found in the defensive gland spray of phasmid insects and the first chemical analysis of glandular material from family Phylliidae.
Insect; Phyllium westwoodii; Phasmatodea; Phasmid; Phylliidae; Chemical ecology; Defense; Dimethyl alkylpyrazine; 3-Isobutyl-2,5-dimethylpyrazine; 2,5-Dimethyl-3-(2-methylbutyl)pyrazine; 2,5-Dimethyl-3-(3-methylbutyl)pyrazine; Glucose
Insects are the largest and most diverse group of organisms on earth, with over 1,000,000 species identified to date. Stick insects (“walkingsticks” or “phasmids”, Order Phasmatodea) are well known for and name derived from their uncanny stereotypical use of camouflage as a primary line of defense from predation. However, many species also possess a potent chemical defense spray. Recently we discovered that the defensive spray of Asceles glaber contains spiroketals (confirmed major component: (2S,6R)-(−)(E)-2-methyl-1,7-dioxaspiro[5.5]undecane and tentative minor component: 2-ethyl-1,6-dioxaspiro[4.5]decane) and glucose. In this paper we 1) illustrate the identification of spiroketals and glucose in the defense spray of A. glaber using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR), Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS), and comparison with a synthetic reference sample, 2) provide the elucidation of the absolute configuration of the major spiroketal in that defense spray and 3) demonstrate the effect of this compound and its enantiomer on both fire ants (Solenopsis invicta) and mosquitoes (Aedes aegypti).
Spiroketal; Phasmatodea; Asceles glaber; Solenopsis invicta; Aedes aegypti; Defense
Chiral Brønsted acid catalyzed asymmetric allenylboration reactions are described. Under optimized conditions, anti-homopropargyl alcohols 2 are obtained in high yields with excellent diastereo- and enantioselectivities from stereochemically matched aldehyde allenylboration reactions with (M)-1 catalyzed by the chiral phosphoric acid (S)-4. The syn-isomers 3 can also be obtained in good diastereoselectivities and excellent enantioselectivities from the mismatched allenylboration reactions of aromatic aldehydes using (M)-1 in the presence of the enantiomeric phosphoric acid (R)-4. The stereochemistry of the methyl group introduced into 2 and 3 is controlled by the chirality of the allenylboronate (M)-1, whereas the configuration of the new hydroxyl stereocenter is controlled by the enantioselectivity of the chiral phosphoric acid catalyst used in these reactions. The synthetic utility of this methodology was further demonstrated in triple asymmetric syntheses of a variety of anti,anti-stereotriads, the direct synthesis of which has constituted a significant challenge using previous generations of aldol and crotylmetal reagents.
Enantioselective hydroboration of racemic allenylboronate (±)-1 with 0.48 equiv of (dIpc)2BH at −25 °C proceeds with efficient kinetic resolution and provides allylborane (R)-Z-4. When heated to 95 °C, allylborane (R)-Z-4 isomerizes to the thermodynamically more stable allylborane isomer (S)-E-7. Subsequent allylboration of aldehydes with (R)-Z-4 or (S)-E-7 at −78 °C followed by oxidative workup provides 1,2-syn- or 1,2-anti-diols, 2 or 3, respectively, in 87–94% ee.
A concise, enantioselective synthesis of (+)-crocacin C is described, featuring a highly diastereoselective mismatched double asymmetric δ-stannylcrotylboration of the stereochemically demanding chiral aldehyde 9 with the bifunctional crotylborane reagent (S)-E-10. The total synthesis of (+)-crocacin C was accomplished in seven steps (longest linear sequence) starting from commercially available precursors.
Basiliskamide A is an antifungal polyketide natural product isolated by Andersen and co-workers from a Bacillus laterosporus isolate, PNG-276. A nine-step enantioselective synthesis of basiliskamide A is reported, starting from commercially available β-hydroxy ester 7. The synthesis features a highly diastereoselective mismatched double asymmetric δ-stannylallylboration reaction of aldehyde 5 with the bifunctional allylborane reagent 4.
The stereocontrolled synthesis of the β-branched anti, anti-dipropionate stereotriad 4 via aldol or crotylmetal chemistry represents a historical challenge to the organic synthesis community. Here we describe a general solution to the long-standing problem associated with the synthesis of 4 by utilizing mismatched double asymmetric crotylboration reactions of enantioenriched α-methyl substituted aldehydes with the chiral, nonracemic crotylborane reagent (S)-(E)-22 (or its enantiomer). This method not only provides direct access to anti, anti-dipropionate stereotriads 24 [a synthetic equivalent of 4] with very good (5-8:1) if not excellent (≥15:1) diastereoselectivity from β-branched chiral aldehydes with ≤50:1 intrinsic diastereofacial selectivity preferences, but also provides a vinylstannane unit in the products that is properly functionalized for use in subsequent C-C bond forming events. We anticipate that this method will be widely applicable and will lead to substantial simplification of strategies for synthesis of polyketide natural products.
Thymidylate kinase (TMK) is a potential chemotherapeutic target because it is directly involved in the synthesis of an essential component, thymidine triphosphate, in DNA replication. All reported TMK inhibitors are thymidine analogs, which might retard their development as potent therapeutics due to cell permeability and off-target activity against human TMK. A small molecule hit (1, IC50 = 58 μM), which has reasonable inhibition potency against Pseudomonas aeruginosa TMK (PaTMK), was identified by the analysis of the binding mode of thymidine or TP5A in a PaTMK homology model. This hit (1) was co-crystallized with PaTMK, and several potent PaTMK inhibitors (leads, 46, 47, 48, and 56, IC50 = 100–200 nM) were synthesized using computer aided design approaches including virtual synthesis/screening, which was used to guide the design of inhibitors. The binding mode of the optimized leads in PaTMK overlaps with that of other bacterial TMKs, but not with human TMK which shares few common features with the bacterial enzymes. Therefore, the optimized TMK inhibitors described here should be useful for the development of antibacterial agents targeting TMK without undesired off-target effects. In addition, an inhibition mechanism associated with the LID loop, which mimics the process of phosphate transfer from ATP to dTMP, was proposed based on X-ray co-crystal structures, homology models, and SAR results.
Tirandamycin C is a newly isolated member of the tetramic acid family natural products. We described herein the first enantioselective synthesis of natural (−)-tirandamycin C, the postulated biosynthetic precursor of other members of this family. The highly stereoselective (>15:1) mismatched double asymmetric γ-stannylcrotylboration reaction of aldehyde 8 with crotylborane reagent (R)-E-9 was utilized to access the key anti, anti-stereotriad 18.
A highly stereoselective synthesis of the C(22)-C(36) fragment 2 of reidispongiolide A is described. This synthesis features the highly stereoselective mismatched double asymmetric crotylboration reaction of the aldehyde derived from 5 and the new chiral reagent (S)-(E)-7 that provides 12 with >15:1 d.r. Subsequent coupling of the derived vinyl iodide 3 with aldehyde 16 provided allylic alcohol 17, that was elaborated by three steps into the targeted reidispongiolide fragment 2.
Studies on the synthesis of reidispongiolide A; Mismatched double asymmetric crotylboration; Stereoselective synthesis of the anti; anti stereotriad
Matrix metalloproteinase 13 (MMP-13) has been implicated as the protease responsible for collagen degradation in cartilage during osteoarthritis (OA). Compounds that inhibit the metalloproteinase at the Zn binding site typically lack specificity among MMP family members. Analogs of the low-micromolar lead MMP-13 inhibitor 4, discovered through high-throughput screening, were synthesized to investigate structure activity relationships in this inhibitor series. Systematic modifications of 4 led to the discovery of MMP-13 inhibitors 20 and 24 which are more selective than 4 against other MMPs. Compound 20 is also approximately 5-fold more potent as an MMP-13 inhibitor than the original HTS-derived lead compound 4.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV) emerged as the causal agent of an endemic atypical pneumonia, infecting thousands of people worldwide. Although a number of promising potential vaccines and therapeutic agents for SARS-CoV have been described, no effective antiviral drug against SARS-CoV is currently available. The intricate, sequential nature of the viral entry process provides multiple valid targets for drug development. Here, we describe a rapid and safe cell-based high-throughput screening system, Dual Envelope Pseudovirion (DEP) Assay, for specifically screening inhibitors of viral entry. The assay system employs a novel dual envelope strategy, using lentiviral pseudovirions as targets whose entry is driven by the SARS-CoV Spike glycoprotein. A second, unrelated viral envelope is used as an internal control to reduce the number of false positives. As an example of the power of this assay a class of inhibitors is reported with the potential to inhibit SARS-CoV at two steps of the replication cycle, viral entry and particle assembly. This assay system can be easily adapted to screen entry inhibitors against other viruses with the careful selection of matching partner virus envelopes.
Inhibitors of SARS-CoV entry; Antiviral; HTS; High-throughput screening; Dual envelope pseudovirion assay; pseudovirus
(E)-δ -stannyl homoallylic alcohols are prepared by an allene hydroboration-aldehyde allylboration sequence (Chen et al. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010, 132, 7881). Key to this reaction sequence is that the kinetic allene hydroboration product, 2a, is less stable than and isomerizes to the more sterically congested α-stannylallylborane 3a (see abstract figure). An M06-2X density functional analysis shows that the C—Sn to boron σ-π hyperconjugation interaction is sufficiently stabilizing to override the steric congestion in 3a.
Interest in the synthesis of the C(23)-C(40) fragment 2 of tetrafibricin prompted us to develop a new method for the synthesis of 1,5-syn-(E)-diols. Toward this end, the kinetically controlled hydroboration of allenes 6, 33, ent-39, 42 and 45 with the Soderquist borane 25R were studied. Tetrabutylammonium allenyltrifluoroborate 45 gave superior results and was utilized in a double allylboration sequence with two different aldehydes to provide the targeted 1,5-syn-(E)-diols in generally high yields (72–98%), and with high enantioselectivity (>95% e.e.), diastereoselectivity (d.r. >20:1), and (E)/(Z) selectivity (>20:1). This new method was applied to the synthesis of the C(23)-C(40) fragment 2 of tetrafibricin.
Studies on the synthesis of tetrafibricin; Double allylboration; Allene hydroboration, kinetically controlled; Tetrabutylammonium allenyltrifluoroborate; Stereoselective synthesis of syn-1,5-E-diols
Retinoids are potent forms of vitamin A and are involved in a broad range of physiological processes and the pharmacological effects of retinoids are primarily mediated by the retinoic acid receptors (RARs) and the retinoid X receptors (RXRs). Several natural and synthetic RAR modulators have proven to be clinically useful for a number of therapeutic indications including cancer, psoriasis, and diabetes. Unfortunately, these agents lead to a number of significant side effects. Most synthetic retinoid ligands are based on the retinoid scaffold and thus have similarities to the natural ligand with all previously disclosed RAR ligands having a carboxylic acid that makes a critical ionic bridge within the ligand binding domain of the receptors. The potential therapeutic value offered from RAR modulation provides the impetus to identify novel ligands based on unique scaffolds that may offer improved toxicity and pharmacokinetic profiles. Here we describe the identification of an atypical RAR inverse agonist that represents the first non-acid, non-retinoid direct modulator of RAR receptor subfamily. SR-0065 functions as a pan-RAR inverse agonist suppressing the basal activity of RARα, RARβ, and RARγ as well as inhibiting agonist induced RAR activity. SR-0065 treatment enhanced receptor interaction with a peptide representative of the corepressor SMRT and in cells SR-0065 enhances recruitment of SMRT to RARγ. The acid form of SR-0065, SR-1758, was inactive in all assays. Thus, SR-0065 represents a new class of non-acid, non-retinoid RAR modulator that may be used as a point to initiate development of improved RAR-targeted drugs.
A highly stereoselective synthesis of a model C(18)–C(35) spiroketal unit (7) of integramycin has been accomplished via an enantioselective stannyl-crotylboration reaction and an N-iodosuccinimide-mediated spiroketalization of 19a.
Macrolide antibacterial agents inhibit parasite proliferation by targeting the apicoplast ribosome. Motivated by the long-term goal of identifying antiparasitic macrolides that lack antibacterial activity, we have systematically analyzed the structure-activity relationships among erythromycin analogues and have also investigated the mechanism of action of selected compounds. Two lead compounds, N-benzyl-azithromycin (11) and N-phenylpropyl-azithromycin (30), were identified with significantly higher antiparasitic activity and lower antibacterial activity than erythromycin or azithromycin. Molecular modeling based on the co-crystal structure of azithromycin bound to the bacterial ribosome suggested that a substituent at the N-9 position of desmethyl-azithromycin could improve selectivity due to species-specific interactions with the ribosomal L22 protein. Like other macrolides, these lead compounds display a strong “delayed death phenotype”; however, their early effects on T. gondii replication are more pronounced.
A stereoselective synthesis of the decahydrofluorene core of the hirsutellones was accomplished in 8 steps and in 43% overall yield. The key step of the synthesis is the highly stereoselective intramolecular Diels-Alder cyclization of the siloxacyclopentene constrained tetraene 1.
hirsutellone B; Intramolecular Diels-Alder reaction; Siloxacyclopenene-constrained dienophile; stereoselective synthesis; Oxonium ion activated dienophile
The enantioconvergent hydroboration of racemic allenylstannane (±)-1 with (dIpc)2BH converts both enantiomers of (±)-1 into the enantioenriched crotylborane (S)-E-3. Subsequent crotylboration of aldehydes with (S)-E-3 provides (E)-δ-stannyl-homoallylic alcohols 5 in good yields and with excellent enantioselectivity.
The kinetic hydroboration of allenylsilane 5 with (dIpc)2BH at −40 °C provides allylborane 9Z with ≥12:1 selectivity. When the hydroboration is performed at temperatures above −40 °C, 9Z isomerizes to the thermodynamically more stable allylborane 9E with >20:1 selectivity. Subsequent treatment of 9Z or 9E with aldehydes at −78 °C provides syn- or anti-β-hydroxyallylsilanes, 7 or 8, respectively.
A highly stereoselective synthesis of (E)-1,5-syn-diols 6 is described. The kinetically controlled hydroboration of allenyltrifluoroborate 8 with Soderquist borane 2 provides the (Z)-allylic trifluoroborate 9, which undergoes sequential allylboration with two different aldehydes to provide (E)-1,5-syn-diols 6 in 72–98% yields with > 95% ee. and > 20:1 dr. Application of this method to the synthesis of the tetrafibricin C(23)-C(40) fragment 19 is described.
Several nuclear receptors (NRs) are still characterized as orphan receptors since ligands have not yet been identified for these proteins. The retinoic acid receptor-related receptors (RORs) have no well-defined physiological ligands. Here, we describe the identification of a selective RORα synthetic ligand, SR3335 (ML-176). SR3335 directly binds to RORα, but not other RORs, and functions as a selective partial inverse agonist of RORα in cell-based assays. Furthermore, SR3335 suppresses the expression of endogenous RORα target genes in HepG2 involved in hepatic gluconeogenesis including glucose-6-phosphatase and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase. Pharmacokinetic studies indicate that SR3335 displays reasonable exposure following an i.p. injection into mice. We assess the ability of SR3335 to suppress gluconeogenesis in vivo using a diet induced obesity (DIO) mouse model where the mice where treated with 15 mg/kg b.i.d., i.p. for 6-days followed by a pyruvate tolerance test. SR3335 treated mice displayed lower plasma glucose levels following the pyruvate challenge consistent with suppression of gluconeogenesis. Thus, we have identified the first selective synthetic RORα inverse agonist and this compound can be utilized as a chemical tool to probe the function of this receptor both in vitro and in vivo. Additionally, our data suggests that RORα inverse agonists may hold utility for suppression of elevated hepatic glucose production in type 2 diabetics.
The retinoic acid receptor-related receptors (RORs) are members of the nuclear receptor (NR) superfamily of transcription factors. Several NRs are still characterized as orphan receptors since ligands have not yet been identified for these proteins. Here, we describe the identification of a synthetic RORα/RORγ ligand, SR1078. SR1078 modulates the conformation of RORγ in a biochemical assay and activates RORα and RORγ driven transcription. Furthermore, SR1078 stimulates expression of endogenous ROR target genes in HepG2 cells that express both RORα and RORγ. Pharmacokinetic studies indicate that SR1078 displays reasonable exposure following injection into mice and consistent with SR1078 functioning as a RORα/RORγ agonist, expression of two ROR target genes, glucose-6-phosphatase and fibroblast growth factor 21, were stimulated in the liver. Thus, we have identified the first synthetic RORα/γ agonist and this compound can be utilized as a chemical tool to probe the function of these receptors both in vitro and in vivo.