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Molecules 2017, 22(9), 1440; doi:10.3390/molecules22091440

Novel Selective Estrogen Receptor Ligand Conjugates Incorporating Endoxifen-Combretastatin and Cyclofenil-Combretastatin Hybrid Scaffolds: Synthesis and Biochemical Evaluation

1
School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute, 152-160 Pearse Street, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland
2
School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland
3
School of Biochemistry and Immunology, Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute, 152-160 Pearse Street, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 9 July 2017 / Revised: 9 August 2017 / Accepted: 17 August 2017 / Published: 31 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polypharmacology and Multitarget Drug Discovery)
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Abstract

Nuclear receptors such as the estrogen receptors (ERα and ERβ) modulate the effects of the estrogen hormones and are important targets for design of innovative chemotherapeutic agents for diseases such as breast cancer and osteoporosis. Conjugate and bifunctional compounds which incorporate an ER ligand offer a useful method of delivering cytotoxic drugs to tissue sites such as breast cancers which express ERs. A series of novel conjugate molecules incorporating both the ER ligands endoxifen and cyclofenil-endoxifen hybrids covalently linked to the antimitotic and tubulin targeting agent combretastatin A-4 were synthesised and evaluated as ER ligands. A number of these compounds demonstrated pro-apoptotic effects, with potent antiproliferative activity in ER-positive MCF-7 breast cancer cell lines and low cytotoxicity. These conjugates displayed binding affinity towards ERα and ERβ isoforms at nanomolar concentrations e.g., the cyclofenil-amide compound 13e is a promising lead compound of a clinically relevant ER conjugate with IC50 in MCF-7 cells of 187 nM, and binding affinity to ERα (IC50 = 19 nM) and ERβ (IC50 = 229 nM) while the endoxifen conjugate 16b demonstrates antiproliferative activity in MCF-7 cells (IC50 = 5.7 nM) and binding affinity to ERα (IC50 = 15 nM) and ERβ (IC50 = 115 nM). The ER binding effects are rationalised in a molecular modelling study in which the disruption of the ER helix-12 in the presence of compounds 11e, 13e and 16b is presented These conjugate compounds have potential application for further development as antineoplastic agents in the treatment of ER positive breast cancers. View Full-Text
Keywords: tumour targeting conjugates; selective estrogen receptor modulators; combretastatin A-4(CA-4); endoxifen; cyclofenil; estrogen receptor ligands; hormone-dependent breast cancer; apoptosis tumour targeting conjugates; selective estrogen receptor modulators; combretastatin A-4(CA-4); endoxifen; cyclofenil; estrogen receptor ligands; hormone-dependent breast cancer; apoptosis
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Kelly, P.M.; Keely, N.O.; Bright, S.A.; Yassin, B.; Ana, G.; Fayne, D.; Zisterer, D.M.; Meegan, M.J. Novel Selective Estrogen Receptor Ligand Conjugates Incorporating Endoxifen-Combretastatin and Cyclofenil-Combretastatin Hybrid Scaffolds: Synthesis and Biochemical Evaluation. Molecules 2017, 22, 1440.

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