Tryptophan 2,3-dioxygenase (TDO) inhibitors. 3-(2-(pyridyl)ethenyl)indoles as potential anticancer immunomodulators

E. Dolušić, P. Larrieu, L. Moineaux, V. Stroobant, L. Pilotte, D. Colau, L. Pochet, B. Van Den Eynde, B. Masereel, J. Wouters, R. Frédérick

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Tryptophan catabolism mediated by indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) is an important mechanism of peripheral immune tolerance contributing to tumoral immune resistance. IDO inhibition is thus an active area of research in drug development. Recently, our group has shown that tryptophan 2,3-dioxygenase (TDO), an unrelated hepatic enzyme also catalyzing the first step of tryptophan degradation, is also expressed in many tumors and that this expression prevents tumor rejection by locally depleting tryptophan. Herein, we report a structure-activity study on a series of 3-(2-(pyridyl)ethenyl)indoles. More than 70 novel derivatives were synthesized, and their TDO inhibitory potency was evaluated. The rationalization of the structure-activity relationships (SARs) revealed essential features to attain high TDO inhibition and notably a dense H-bond network mainly involving His and Thr residues. Our study led to the identification of a very promising compound (58) displaying good TDO inhibition (K = 5.5 μM), high selectivity, and good oral bioavailability. Indeed, 58 was chosen for preclinical evaluation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5320-5334
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Medicinal Chemistry
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 11 Aug 2011
EventBOSS XIII - 13th Belgian Organic Synthesis Symposium Louvain, 15 - 20 juillet 2012 - Leuven, Belgium
Duration: 15 Jul 201220 Jul 2012


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