Design, synthesis, and pharmacological evaluation of pyridinic analogues of nimesulide as cyclooxygenase-2 selective inhibitors

Fabien Julémont, Xavier de Leval, Catherine Michaux, Jean-François Renard, Jean-Yves Winum, Jean-Louis Montero, Jacques Damas, Jean-Michel Dogné, Bernard Pirotte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this study, we report the synthesis and pharmacological evaluation of original pyridinic sulfonamides related to nimesulide, a cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) preferential inhibitor widely used as an anti-inflammatory agent. These original pyridinic derivatives were synthesized in three steps starting from the condensation of 3-bromo-4-nitropyridine N-oxide with appropriately substituted phenols, thiophenols, or anilines followed by a reduction of the nitro moiety into the corresponding aminopyridine, which was finally condensed with alkane- or trifluoromethanesulfonyl chloride to obtain the corresponding sulfonamides. The pK(a) determinations demonstrated that the major ionic form present in solution at physiological pH depends on the nature of the sulfonamide moiety subsituent. Indeed, alkanesulfonamides were mainly present as zwitterionic molecules while trifluoromethanesulfonamides, more acidic derivatives, were mainly present as anionic molecules. The in vitro pharmacological evaluation of the synthesized compounds against COX-1 and COX-2 was performed in a human whole blood model. Results obtained demonstrated that most of alkanesulfonamide derivatives displayed a COX-2 preferential inhibition with selectivity ratio values (IC(50)(COX-1)/IC(50)(COX-2)) up to 7.92 (celecoxib displaying a ratio value of 7.46 in the same test). On the other hand, trifluoromethanesulfonamide derivatives displayed weaker selectivity ratios although they exhibited IC(50) values against COX-2 up to 0.09 microM (celecoxib IC(50) against COX-2: 0.35 microM). Finally, in vivo evaluation of selected compounds showed that they exhibited anti-inflammatory properties similar to that of nimesulide when tested in a carrageenan-induced rat paw oedema model.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6749-59
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Medicinal Chemistry
Issue number27
Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2004


  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • Cyclooxygenase 2
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 Inhibitors
  • Cyclooxygenase Inhibitors
  • Drug Design
  • Humans
  • Isoenzymes
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases
  • Pyridines
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Sulfonamides


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