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Pharmaceuticals, Volume 15, Issue 8 (August 2022) – 130 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Turmeric, Indian frankincense, Green chiretta and Black pepper are the most popular botanicals for inflammatory bowel disease treatment. Despite the successful results of clinical studies, there is still considerable concern surrounding the bioavailability of their biologically active ingredients. Chromatographic methods using immobilized artificial membrane provide the introduction to the separation mode of biological structures playing an essential role in bioavailability—phospholipids. High-performance affinity chromatography using human serum albumin and α1-acid glycoprotein as ligands has been successfully used to evaluate the interactions with proteins. The main aim of this study was to assess the lipophilicity of biologically active ingredients by shake-flask procedure and evaluate their biomimetic chromatography profile. View this paper
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Article
α-Glucosidase and α-Amylase Inhibitory Potentials of Quinoline–1,3,4-oxadiazole Conjugates Bearing 1,2,3-Triazole with Antioxidant Activity, Kinetic Studies, and Computational Validation
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1035; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081035 - 22 Aug 2022
Viewed by 507
Abstract
Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a multifaceted metabolic disorder that remains a major threat to global health security. Sadly, the clinical relevance of available drugs is burdened with an upsurge in adverse effects; hence, inhibiting the carbohydrate-hydrolyzing enzymes α-glucosidase and α-amylase while preventing oxidative [...] Read more.
Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a multifaceted metabolic disorder that remains a major threat to global health security. Sadly, the clinical relevance of available drugs is burdened with an upsurge in adverse effects; hence, inhibiting the carbohydrate-hydrolyzing enzymes α-glucosidase and α-amylase while preventing oxidative stress is deemed a practicable strategy for regulating postprandial glucose levels in DM patients. We report herein the α-glucosidase and α-amylase inhibition and antioxidant profile of quinoline hybrids 4at and 12at bearing 1,3,4-oxadiazole and 1,2,3-triazole cores, respectively. Overall, compound 4i with a bromopentyl sidechain exhibited the strongest α-glucosidase inhibition (IC50 = 15.85 µM) relative to reference drug acarbose (IC50 = 17.85 µM) and the best antioxidant profile in FRAP, DPPH, and NO scavenging assays. Compounds 4a and 12g also emerged as the most potent NO scavengers (IC50 = 2.67 and 3.01 µM, respectively) compared to gallic acid (IC50 = 728.68 µM), while notable α-glucosidase inhibition was observed for p-fluorobenzyl compound 4k (IC50 = 23.69 µM) and phenyl-1,2,3-triazolyl compound 12k (IC50 = 22.47 µM). Moreover, kinetic studies established the mode of α-glucosidase inhibition as non-competitive, thus classifying the quinoline hybrids as allosteric inhibitors. Molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulations then provided insights into the protein–ligand interaction profile and the stable complexation of promising hybrids at the allosteric site of α-glucosidase. These results showcase these compounds as worthy scaffolds for developing more potent α-glucosidase inhibitors with antioxidant activity for effective DM management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hybrid Drugs: Design and Applications)
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Article
Residual Microscopic Peritoneal Metastases after Macroscopic Complete Cytoreductive Surgery for Advanced High-Grade Serous Ovarian Carcinoma: A Target for Folate Receptor Targeted Photodynamic Therapy?
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1034; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081034 - 22 Aug 2022
Viewed by 626
Abstract
Despite conventional treatment combining complete macroscopic cytoreductive surgery (CRS) and systemic chemotherapy, residual microscopic peritoneal metastases (mPM) may persist as the cause of peritoneal recurrence in 60% of patients. Therefore, there is a real need to specifically target these mPM to definitively eradicate [...] Read more.
Despite conventional treatment combining complete macroscopic cytoreductive surgery (CRS) and systemic chemotherapy, residual microscopic peritoneal metastases (mPM) may persist as the cause of peritoneal recurrence in 60% of patients. Therefore, there is a real need to specifically target these mPM to definitively eradicate any traces of the disease and improve patient survival. Therapeutic targeting method, such as photodynamic therapy, would be a promising method for such a purpose. Folate receptor alpha (FRα), as it is specifically overexpressed by cancer cells from various origins, including ovarian cancer cells, is a good target to address photosensitizing molecules. The aim of this study was to determine FRα expression by residual mPM after complete macroscopic CRS in patients with advanced high-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC). A prospective study conducted between 1 June 2018 and 10 July 2019 in a single referent center accredited by the European Society of Gynecological Oncology for advanced EOC surgical management. Consecutive patients presenting with advanced HGSOC and eligible for complete macroscopic CRS were included. Up to 13 peritoneal biopsies were taken from macroscopically healthy peritoneum at the end of CRS and examined for the presence of mPM. In case of detection of mPM, a systematic search for RFα expression by immunohistochemistry was performed. Twenty-six patients were included and 26.9% presented mPM. In the subgroup of patients with mPM, FRα expression was positive on diagnostic biopsy before neoadjuvant chemotherapy for 67% of patients, on macroscopic peritoneal metastases for 86% of patients, and on mPM for 75% of patients. In the subgroup of patients with no mPM, FRα expression was found on diagnostic biopsy before neoadjuvant chemotherapy in 29% of patients and on macroscopic peritoneal metastases in 78% of patients. FRα is well expressed by patients with or without mPM after complete macroscopic CRS in patients with advanced HGSOC. In addition to conventional cytoreductive surgery, the use of a therapeutic targeting method, such as photodynamic therapy, by addressing photosensitizing molecules that specifically target FRα may be studied. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photodynamic Therapy 2022)
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Review
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis: Viewer or Actor? To Treat or Not to Treat?
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1033; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081033 - 22 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 581
Abstract
Background: Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a rare and severe disease with a median survival of ∼3 years. Several risk factors have been identified, such as age, genetic predisposition, tobacco exposure, and gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Prevalence of GERD in IPF is high [...] Read more.
Background: Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a rare and severe disease with a median survival of ∼3 years. Several risk factors have been identified, such as age, genetic predisposition, tobacco exposure, and gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Prevalence of GERD in IPF is high and may affect 87% of patients, of whom only half (47%) report symptoms. Objective: The aim of this study is to review current evidence regarding the correlation between GERD and IPF and to evaluate the current studies regarding treatments for GERD-IPF. Methods: A review to identify research papers documenting an association between GERD and IPF was performed. Results: We identified several studies that have confirmed the association between GERD and IPF, with an increased acid exposure, risk of gastric aspiration and bile acids levels in these patients. Few studies focused their attention on GERD treatment, showing how antiacid therapy was not able to change IPF evolution. Conclusions: This review investigating the correlation between GERD and IPF has confirmed the hypothesized association. However, further large prospective studies are needed to corroborate and elucidate these findings with a focus on preventative and treatment strategies. Full article
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Review
Roles of Bromodomain Extra Terminal Proteins in Metabolic Signaling and Diseases
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1032; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081032 - 22 Aug 2022
Viewed by 608
Abstract
BET proteins, which recognize and bind to acetylated histones, play a key role in transcriptional regulation. The development of chemical BET inhibitors in 2010 greatly facilitated the study of these proteins. BETs play crucial roles in cancer, inflammation, heart failure, and fibrosis. In [...] Read more.
BET proteins, which recognize and bind to acetylated histones, play a key role in transcriptional regulation. The development of chemical BET inhibitors in 2010 greatly facilitated the study of these proteins. BETs play crucial roles in cancer, inflammation, heart failure, and fibrosis. In particular, BETs may be involved in regulating metabolic processes, such as adipogenesis and metaflammation, which are under tight transcriptional regulation. In addition, acetyl-CoA links energy metabolism with epigenetic modification through lysine acetylation, which creates docking sites for BET. Given this, it is possible that the ambient energy status may dictate metabolic gene transcription via a BET-dependent mechanism. Indeed, recent studies have reported that various BET proteins are involved in both metabolic signaling regulation and disease. Here, we discuss some of the most recent information on BET proteins and their regulation of the metabolism in both cellular and animal models. Further, we summarize data from some randomized clinical trials evaluating BET inhibitors for the treatment of metabolic diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bromodomains: A New Target Class for Drug Development)
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Article
Design, Synthesis and Biological Investigation of 2-Anilino Triazolopyrimidines as Tubulin Polymerization Inhibitors with Anticancer Activities
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1031; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081031 - 21 Aug 2022
Viewed by 640
Abstract
A further investigation aiming to generate new potential antitumor agents led us to synthesize a new series of twenty-two compounds characterized by the presence of the 7-(3′,4′,5′-trimethoxyphenyl)-[1,2,4]triazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidine pharmacophore modified at its 2-position. Among the synthesized compounds, three were significantly more active [...] Read more.
A further investigation aiming to generate new potential antitumor agents led us to synthesize a new series of twenty-two compounds characterized by the presence of the 7-(3′,4′,5′-trimethoxyphenyl)-[1,2,4]triazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidine pharmacophore modified at its 2-position. Among the synthesized compounds, three were significantly more active than the others. These bore the substituents p-toluidino (3d), p-ethylanilino (3h) and 3′,4′-dimethylanilino (3f), and these compounds had IC50 values of 30–43, 160–240 and 67–160 nM, respectively, on HeLa, A549 and HT-29 cancer cells. The p-toluidino derivative 3d was the most potent inhibitor of tubulin polymerization (IC50: 0.45 µM) and strongly inhibited the binding of colchicine to tubulin (72% inhibition), with antiproliferative activity superior to CA-4 against A549 and HeLa cancer cell lines. In vitro investigation showed that compound 3d was able to block treated cells in the G2/M phase of the cell cycle and to induce apoptosis following the intrinsic pathway, further confirmed by mitochondrial depolarization and caspase-9 activation. In vivo experiments conducted on the zebrafish model showed good activity of 3d in reducing the mass of a HeLa cell xenograft. These effects occurred at nontoxic concentrations to the animal, indicating that 3d merits further developmental studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Anti-proliferative Agents)
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Article
Inter-Ligand STD NMR: An Efficient 1D NMR Approach to Probe Relative Orientation of Ligands in a Multi-Subsite Protein Binding Pocket
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1030; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081030 - 21 Aug 2022
Viewed by 895
Abstract
In recent years, Saturation Transfer Difference NMR (STD NMR) has been proven to be a powerful and versatile ligand-based NMR technique to elucidate crucial aspects in the investigation of protein-ligand complexes. Novel STD NMR approaches relying on “multi-frequency” irradiation have enabled us to [...] Read more.
In recent years, Saturation Transfer Difference NMR (STD NMR) has been proven to be a powerful and versatile ligand-based NMR technique to elucidate crucial aspects in the investigation of protein-ligand complexes. Novel STD NMR approaches relying on “multi-frequency” irradiation have enabled us to even elucidate specific ligand-amino acid interactions and explore the binding of fragments in previously unknown binding subsites. Exploring multi-subsite protein binding pockets is especially important in Fragment Based Drug Discovery (FBDD) to design leads of increased specificity and efficacy. We hereby propose a novel multi-frequency STD NMR approach based on direct irradiation of one of the ligands in a multi-ligand binding process, to probe the vicinity and explore the relative orientation of fragments in adjacent binding sub-sites, which we called Inter-Ligand STD NMR (IL-STD NMR). We proved its applicability on (i) a standard protein-ligand system commonly used for ligand-observed NMR benchmarking: Naproxen as bound to Bovine Serum Albumin, and (ii) the biologically relevant system of Cholera Toxin Subunit B and two inhibitors adjacently bound within the GM1 binding site. Relative to Inter-Ligand NOE (ILOE), the current state-of-the-art methodology to probe relative orientations of adjacent ligands, IL-STD NMR requires about one tenth of the experimental time and protein consumption, making it a competitive methodology with the potential to be applied in the pharmaceutical industries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue High Field NMR and Ultra-High Field NMR in Medicinal Chemistry)
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Review
Pharmacological Small Molecules against Prostate Cancer by Enhancing Function of Death Receptor 5
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1029; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081029 - 21 Aug 2022
Viewed by 453
Abstract
Death receptor 5 (DR5) is a membrane protein that mediates exogenous apoptosis. Based on its function, it is considered to be a target for the treatment of cancers including prostate cancer. It is encouraging to note that a number of drugs targeting DR5 [...] Read more.
Death receptor 5 (DR5) is a membrane protein that mediates exogenous apoptosis. Based on its function, it is considered to be a target for the treatment of cancers including prostate cancer. It is encouraging to note that a number of drugs targeting DR5 are now progressing to different stages of clinical trial studies. We collected 38 active compounds that could produce anti-prostate-cancer effects by modulating DR5, 28 of which were natural compounds and 10 of which were synthetic compounds. In addition, 6 clinically used chemotherapeutic agents have also been shown to promote DR5 expression and thus exert apoptosis-inducing effects in prostate cancer cells. These compounds promote the expression of DR5, thereby enhancing its function in inducing apoptosis. When these compounds were used in combination with the natural ligand of DR5, the number of apoptotic cells was significantly increased. These compounds are all promising for development as anti-prostate-cancer drugs, while most of these compounds are currently being evaluated for their anti-prostate-cancer effects at the cellular level and in animal studies. A great deal of more in-depth research is needed to evaluate whether they can be developed as drugs. We collected literature reports on small molecules against prostate cancer through modulation of DR5 to understand the current dynamics in this field and to evaluate the prospects of small molecules against prostate cancer through modulation of DR5. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Advances in Anti-cancer Drugs)
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Systematic Review
Schinopsis brasiliensis Engler—Phytochemical Properties, Biological Activities, and Ethnomedicinal Use: A Scoping Review
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1028; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081028 - 20 Aug 2022
Viewed by 499
Abstract
Brazil has the most incredible biodiversity globally and has a vast storehouse of molecules to be discovered. However, there are no pharmacological and phytochemical studies on most native plants. Parts of Schinopsis brasiliensis Engler, a tree from the Anacardiaceae family, are used by [...] Read more.
Brazil has the most incredible biodiversity globally and has a vast storehouse of molecules to be discovered. However, there are no pharmacological and phytochemical studies on most native plants. Parts of Schinopsis brasiliensis Engler, a tree from the Anacardiaceae family, are used by several traditional communities to treat injuries and health problems. The objective of this scoping review was to summarize the pharmacological information about S. brasiliensis, from ethnobotanical to phytochemical and biological studies. Data collection concerning the geographical distribution of S. brasiliensis specimens was achieved through the Reflora Virtual Herbarium. The study’s protocol was drafted using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for Scoping Reviews (PRISMA-ScR). The search strategy used the keyword “Schinopsis brasiliensis” in the databases: PUBMED, EMBASE, SCOPUS, Science Direct, Web of Science, SciFinder, and SciELO. Rayyan was used for the selection of eligible studies. In total, 35 studies were included in the paper. The most recurrent therapeutic indications were for general pain, flu and inflammation. The bark was the most studied part of the plant. The most used preparation method was decoction and infusion, followed by syrup. Phytochemical investigations indicate the presence of tannins, flavonoids, phenols, and polyphenols. Most of the substances were found in the plant’s leaf and bark. Important biological activities were reported, such as antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory. S. brasiliensis is used mainly by communities in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil to treat several diseases. Pharmacological and phytochemical studies together provide scientific support for the popular knowledge of the medicinal use of S. brasiliensis. In vitro and in vivo analyses reported antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, cytotoxic, photoprotective, preservative, molluscicidal, larvicidal, and pupicidal effects. It is essential to highlight the need for future studies that elucidate the mechanisms of action of these phytocompounds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ethnopharmacology in Latin America)
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Article
Asperuloside Prevents Peri-Implantitis via Suppression of NF-κB and ERK1/2 on Rats
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1027; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081027 - 20 Aug 2022
Viewed by 449
Abstract
Peri-implantitis is characterized by inflammatory cell infiltration and hyperactivation of the osteoclasts surrounding dental implants which can result in bone resorption and ultimately implant failure. Therefore, coordinating the activity of inflammatory response and bone-resorbing osteoclasts is crucial for the prevention of peri-implantitis. Asperuloside [...] Read more.
Peri-implantitis is characterized by inflammatory cell infiltration and hyperactivation of the osteoclasts surrounding dental implants which can result in bone resorption and ultimately implant failure. Therefore, coordinating the activity of inflammatory response and bone-resorbing osteoclasts is crucial for the prevention of peri-implantitis. Asperuloside (ASP), an iridoid glycoside, has significant anti-inflammatory activities, suggesting the great potential in attenuating peri-implantitis bone resorption. A ligature-induced peri-implantitis model in the maxilla of rats was established, and the effects of ASP on preventing peri-implantitis were evaluated after four weeks of ligation using micro-CT and histological staining. RT-PCR, western blotting, tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP), and immunofluorescent staining were conducted on osteoclasts to confirm the mechanisms of ASP on osteoclastogenesis. The results show that ASP could lead to attenuation of alveolar bone resorption in peri-implantitis by inhibiting osteoclast formation and decreasing pro-inflammatory cytokine levels in vivo. Furthermore, ASP could inhibit osteoclastogenesis by downregulating expression levels of transcription factors nuclear factor of activated T-cell (NFATc1) via restraining the activations of nuclear factor kappa beta (NF-κB) and the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-related kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2). In conclusion, ASP could significantly attenuate bone resorption in peri-implantitis via inhibition of osteoclastogenesis by suppressing NF-κB and ERK1/2 signaling pathways activations. Full article
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Article
The Effect of 1,2,4-Triazole-3-thiol Derivatives Bearing Hydrazone Moiety on Cancer Cell Migration and Growth of Melanoma, Breast, and Pancreatic Cancer Spheroids
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1026; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081026 - 20 Aug 2022
Viewed by 467
Abstract
4-Phenyl-3-[2-(phenylamino)ethyl]-1H-1,2,4-triazole-5(4H)-thione was used as a starting compound for the synthesis of the corresponding 1,2,4-triazol-3-ylthioacetohydrazide, which reacts with isatins and various aldehydes bearing aromatic and heterocyclic moieties provided target hydrazones. Their cytotoxicity was tested by the MTT assay against human [...] Read more.
4-Phenyl-3-[2-(phenylamino)ethyl]-1H-1,2,4-triazole-5(4H)-thione was used as a starting compound for the synthesis of the corresponding 1,2,4-triazol-3-ylthioacetohydrazide, which reacts with isatins and various aldehydes bearing aromatic and heterocyclic moieties provided target hydrazones. Their cytotoxicity was tested by the MTT assay against human melanoma IGR39, human triple-negative breast cancer (MDA-MB-231), and pancreatic carcinoma (Panc-1) cell lines. The selectivity of compounds towards cancer cells was also studied. In general, the synthesized compounds were more cytotoxic against the melanoma cell line. N′-(2-oxoindolin-3-ylidene)-2-((4-phenyl-5-(2-(phenylamino)ethyl)-4H-1,2,4-triazol-3-yl)thio)acetohydrazide, N′-((1H-pyrrol-2-yl)methylene)-2-((4-phenyl-5-(2-(phenylamino)ethyl)-4H-1,2,4-triazol-3-yl)thio)acetohydrazide and N′-(2-hydroxy-5-nitrobenzylidene)-2-((4-phenyl-5-(2-(phenylamino)ethyl)-4H-1,2,4-triazol-3-yl)thio)acetohydrazide were identified as the most active among all synthesized compounds in 3D cell cultures. N′-(4-(dimethylamino)benzylidene)-2-((4-phenyl-5-(2-(phenylamino)ethyl)-4H-1,2,4-triazol-3-yl)thio)acetohydrazide inhibited all cancer cell migration, was characterized as relatively more selective towards cancer cells, and could be further tested as an antimetastatic candidate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hybrid Drugs: Design and Applications)
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Review
Digital Pills with Ingestible Sensors: Patent Landscape Analysis
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1025; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081025 - 19 Aug 2022
Viewed by 915
Abstract
The modern healthcare system is directly related to the development of digital health tools and solutions. Pills with digital sensors represent a highly innovative class of new pharmaceuticals. The aim of this work was to analyze the patent landscape and to systematize the [...] Read more.
The modern healthcare system is directly related to the development of digital health tools and solutions. Pills with digital sensors represent a highly innovative class of new pharmaceuticals. The aim of this work was to analyze the patent landscape and to systematize the main trends in patent protection of digital pills with ingestible sensors worldwide; accordingly, to identify the patenting leaders as well as the main prevailing areas of therapy for patent protection, and the future perspectives in the field. In July 2022, a search was conducted using Internet databases, such as the EPO, USPTO, FDA and the Lens database. The patent landscape analysis shows an increase in the number of patents related to digital pills with ingestible sensors for mobile clinical monitoring, smart drug delivery, and endoscopy diagnostics. The leaders in the number of patents issued are the United States, the European Patent Office, Canada, Australia, and China. The following main areas of patenting digital pills with ingestible sensors were identified: treatment in the field of mental health; HIV/AIDS; pain control; cardiovascular diseases; diabetes; gastroenterology (including hepatitis C); oncology; tuberculosis; and transplantology. The development of scientific and practical approaches towards the implementation of effective and safe digital pills will improve treatment outcomes, increase compliance, reduce hospital stays, provide mobile clinical monitoring, have a positive impact on treatment costs and will contribute to increased patient safety. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Reviews in Pharmaceutical Technology)
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Review
Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction and Pulmonary Hypertension: Focus on Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1024; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081024 - 19 Aug 2022
Viewed by 495
Abstract
Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is common in patients with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF). A chronic increase in mean left atrial pressure leads to passive remodeling in pulmonary veins and capillaries and modest PH (isolated postcapillary PH, Ipc-PH) and is not associated [...] Read more.
Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is common in patients with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF). A chronic increase in mean left atrial pressure leads to passive remodeling in pulmonary veins and capillaries and modest PH (isolated postcapillary PH, Ipc-PH) and is not associated with significant right ventricular dysfunction. In approximately 20% of patients with HFpEF, “precapillary” alterations of pulmonary vasculature occur with the development of the combined pre- and post-capillary PH (Cpc-PH), pertaining to a poor prognosis. Current data indicate that pulmonary vasculopathy may be at least partially reversible and thus serves as a therapeutic target in HFpEF. Pulmonary vascular targeted therapies, including phosphodiesterase (PDE) inhibitors, may have a valuable role in the management of patients with PH-HFpEF. In studies of Cpc-PH and HFpEF, PDE type 5 inhibitors were effective in long-term follow-up, decreasing pulmonary artery pressure and improving RV contractility, whereas studies of Ipc-PH did not show any benefit. Randomized trials are essential to elucidate the actual value of PDE inhibition in selected patients with PH-HFpEF, especially in those with invasively confirmed Cpc-PH who are most likely to benefit from such treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phosphodiesterases as Drug Targets: Development and Challenges)
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Review
Chitosan-Based Scaffolds for Facilitated Endogenous Bone Re-Generation
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1023; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081023 - 19 Aug 2022
Viewed by 566
Abstract
Facilitated endogenous tissue engineering, as a facile and effective strategy, is emerging for use in bone tissue regeneration. However, the development of bioactive scaffolds with excellent osteo-inductivity to recruit endogenous stem cells homing and differentiation towards lesion areas remains an urgent problem. Chitosan [...] Read more.
Facilitated endogenous tissue engineering, as a facile and effective strategy, is emerging for use in bone tissue regeneration. However, the development of bioactive scaffolds with excellent osteo-inductivity to recruit endogenous stem cells homing and differentiation towards lesion areas remains an urgent problem. Chitosan (CS), with versatile qualities including good biocompatibility, biodegradability, and tunable physicochemical and biological properties is undergoing vigorously development in the field of bone repair. Based on this, the review focus on recent advances in chitosan-based scaffolds for facilitated endogenous bone regeneration. Initially, we introduced and compared the facilitated endogenous tissue engineering with traditional tissue engineering. Subsequently, the various CS-based bone repair scaffolds and their fabrication methods were briefly explored. Furthermore, the functional design of CS-based scaffolds in bone endogenous regeneration including biomolecular loading, inorganic nanomaterials hybridization, and physical stimulation was highlighted and discussed. Finally, the major challenges and further research directions of CS-based scaffolds were also elaborated. We hope that this review will provide valuable reference for further bone repair research in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polysaccharide-Based Nanoparticles for Theranostic Nanomedicine)
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Review
Treatment Options for Troublesome Itch
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1022; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081022 - 19 Aug 2022
Viewed by 594
Abstract
Itch (or pruritus) is an unpleasant sensation, inducing the desire to scratch. It is also a major and distressing symptom of many skin and systemic diseases. The involvement of histamine, which is a major itch mediator, has been extensively examined. Recent studies suggest [...] Read more.
Itch (or pruritus) is an unpleasant sensation, inducing the desire to scratch. It is also a major and distressing symptom of many skin and systemic diseases. The involvement of histamine, which is a major itch mediator, has been extensively examined. Recent studies suggest that histamine-independent pathways may play roles in chronic itch. Therefore, antihistamines are not always effective in the treatment of patients with chronic itch. The development of biologics and κ-opioid receptor (KOR) agonists has contributed to advances in the treatment of itch; however, since biologics are expensive for patients to purchase, some patients may limit or discontinue their use of these agents. Furthermore, KOR agonists need to be prescribed with caution due to risks of side effects in the central nervous system. Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors are sometimes associated with side effects, such as infection. In this review, we summarize antidepressants, antineuralgics, cyclosporine A, antibiotics, crotamiton, phosphodiesterase 4 inhibitor, botulinum toxin type A, herbal medicines, phototherapy, and acupuncture therapy as itch treatment options other than antihistamines, biologics, opioids, and JAK inhibitors; we also explain their underlying mechanisms of action. Full article
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Article
A Versatile Class of 1,4,4-Trisubstituted Piperidines Block Coronavirus Replication In Vitro
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1021; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081021 - 18 Aug 2022
Viewed by 617
Abstract
There is a clear need for novel antiviral concepts to control SARS-CoV-2 infection. Based on the promising anti-coronavirus activity observed for a class of 1,4,4-trisubstituted piperidines, we here conducted a detailed analysis of the structure–activity relationship of these structurally unique inhibitors. Despite the [...] Read more.
There is a clear need for novel antiviral concepts to control SARS-CoV-2 infection. Based on the promising anti-coronavirus activity observed for a class of 1,4,4-trisubstituted piperidines, we here conducted a detailed analysis of the structure–activity relationship of these structurally unique inhibitors. Despite the presence of five points of diversity, the synthesis of an extensive series of analogues was readily achieved by Ugi four-component reaction from commercially available reagents. After evaluating 63 analogues against human coronavirus 229E, four of the best molecules were selected and shown to have micromolar activity against SARS-CoV-2. Since the action point was situated post virus entry and lying at the stage of viral polyprotein processing and the start of RNA synthesis, enzymatic assays were performed with CoV proteins involved in these processes. While no inhibition was observed for SARS-CoV-2 nsp12-nsp7-nsp8 polymerase, nsp14 N7-methyltransferase and nsp16/nsp10 2’-O-methyltransferase, nor the nsp3 papain-like protease, the compounds clearly inhibited the nsp5 main protease (Mpro). Although the inhibitory activity was quite modest, the plausibility of binding to the catalytic site of Mpro was established by in silico studies. Therefore, the 1,4,4-trisubstituted piperidines appear to represent a novel class of non-covalent CoV Mpro inhibitors that warrants further optimization and development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antiviral Drugs 2021)
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Communication
Therapeutic Effect of Benidipine on Medication-Related Osteonecrosis of the Jaw
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1020; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081020 - 18 Aug 2022
Viewed by 439
Abstract
Medication-related osteonecrosis of the jaw (MRONJ) is an intractable disease that is typically observed in patients with osteoporosis or tumors that have been treated with either bisphosphonate (BP) or antiangiogenic medicine. The mechanism of MRONJ pathogenesis remains unclear, and no effective definitive treatment [...] Read more.
Medication-related osteonecrosis of the jaw (MRONJ) is an intractable disease that is typically observed in patients with osteoporosis or tumors that have been treated with either bisphosphonate (BP) or antiangiogenic medicine. The mechanism of MRONJ pathogenesis remains unclear, and no effective definitive treatment modalities have been reported to date. Previous reports have indicated that a single injection of benidipine, an antihypertensive calcium channel blocker, in the vicinity of a tooth extraction socket promotes wound healing in healthy rats. The present study was conducted to elucidate the possibility of using benidipine to promote the healing of MRONJ-like lesions. In this study, benidipine was administered near the site of MRONJ symptom onset in a model rat, which was then sacrificed two weeks after benidipine injection, and analyzed using histological sections and CT images. The analysis showed that in the benidipine groups, necrotic bone was reduced, and soft tissue continuity was recovered. Furthermore, the distance between epithelial edges, length of necrotic bone exposed in the oral cavity, necrotic bone area, and necrotic bone ratio were significantly smaller in the benidipine group. These results suggest that a single injection of benidipine in the vicinity of MRONJ-like lesions can promote osteonecrotic extraction socket healing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Bone Targeted Drug Delivery Technologies)
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Review
Potential Pharmaceutical Applications of Quercetin in Cardiovascular Diseases
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1019; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081019 - 18 Aug 2022
Viewed by 640
Abstract
Quercetin, as a member of flavonoids, has emerged as a potential therapeutic agent in cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) in recent decades. In this comprehensive literature review, our goal was a critical appraisal of the pathophysiological mechanisms of quercetin in relation to the classical cardiovascular [...] Read more.
Quercetin, as a member of flavonoids, has emerged as a potential therapeutic agent in cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) in recent decades. In this comprehensive literature review, our goal was a critical appraisal of the pathophysiological mechanisms of quercetin in relation to the classical cardiovascular risk factors (e.g., hyperlipidemia), atherosclerosis, etc. We also assessed experimental and clinical data about its potential application in CVDs. Experimental studies including both in vitro methods and in vivo animal models mainly outline the following effects of quercetin: (1) antihypertensive, (2) hypolipidemic, (3) hypoglycemic, (4) anti-atherosclerotic, and (5) cardioprotective (suppressed cardiotoxicity). From the clinical point of view, there are human studies and meta-analyses implicating its beneficial effects on glycemic and lipid parameters. In contrast, other human studies failed to demonstrate consistent favorable effects of quercetin on other cardiometabolic risk factors such as MS, obesity, and hypertension, underlying the need for further investigation. Analyzing the reason of this inconsistency, we identified significant drawbacks in the clinical trials’ design, while the absence of pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic tests prior to the studies attenuated the power of clinical results. Therefore, additional well-designed preclinical and clinical studies are required to examine the therapeutic mechanisms and clinical efficacy of quercetin in CVDs. Full article
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Article
Neuroprotective Effects of an Edible Pigment Brilliant Blue FCF against Behavioral Abnormity in MCAO Rats
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1018; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081018 - 18 Aug 2022
Viewed by 477
Abstract
Ischemic stroke leads to hypoxia-induced neuronal death and behavioral abnormity, and is a major cause of death in the modern society. However, the treatments of this disease are limited. Brilliant Blue FCF (BBF) is an edible pigment used in the food industry that [...] Read more.
Ischemic stroke leads to hypoxia-induced neuronal death and behavioral abnormity, and is a major cause of death in the modern society. However, the treatments of this disease are limited. Brilliant Blue FCF (BBF) is an edible pigment used in the food industry that with multiple aromatic rings and sulfonic acid groups in its structure. BBF and its derivatives were proved to cross the blood-brain barrier and have advantages on the therapy of neuropsychiatric diseases. In this study, BBF, but not its derivatives, significantly ameliorated chemical hypoxia-induced cell death in HT22 hippocampal neuronal cell line. Moreover, protective effects of BBF were attributed to the inhibition of the extracellular regulated protein kinase (ERK) and glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK3β) pathways as evidenced by Western blotting analysis and specific inhibitors. Furthermore, BBF significantly reduced neurological and behavioral abnormity, and decreased brain infarct volume and cerebral edema induced by middle cerebral artery occlusion/reperfusion (MCAO) in rats. MCAO-induced increase of p-ERK in ischemic penumbra was reduced by BBF in rats. These results suggested that BBF prevented chemical hypoxia-induced otoxicity and MCAO-induced behavioral abnormity via the inhibition of the ERK and GSK3β pathways, indicating the potential use of BBF for treating ischemic stroke Full article
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Article
mRNA-Loaded Lipid Nanoparticles Targeting Immune Cells in the Spleen for Use as Cancer Vaccines
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1017; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081017 - 18 Aug 2022
Viewed by 637
Abstract
mRNA delivery has recently gained substantial interest for possible use in vaccines. Recently approved mRNA vaccines are administered intramuscularly where they transfect antigen-presenting cells (APCs) near the site of administration, resulting in an immune response. The spleen contains high numbers of APCs, which [...] Read more.
mRNA delivery has recently gained substantial interest for possible use in vaccines. Recently approved mRNA vaccines are administered intramuscularly where they transfect antigen-presenting cells (APCs) near the site of administration, resulting in an immune response. The spleen contains high numbers of APCs, which are located near B and T lymphocytes. Therefore, transfecting APCs in the spleen would be expected to produce a more efficient immune response, but this is a challenging task due to the different biological barriers. Success requires the development of an efficient system that can transfect different immune cells in the spleen. In this study, we report on the development of mRNA-loaded lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) targeting immune cells in the spleen with the goal of eliciting an efficient immune response against the antigen encoded in the mRNA. The developed system is composed of mRNA loaded in LNPs whose lipid composition was optimized for maximum transfection into spleen cells. Dendritic cells, macrophages and B cells in the spleen were efficiently transfected. The optimized LNPs produced efficient dose-dependent cytotoxic T lymphocyte activities that were significantly higher than that produced after local administration. The optimized LNPs encapsulating tumor-antigen encoding mRNA showed both prophylactic and therapeutic antitumor effects in mice. Full article
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Article
TLC–Densitometry for Determination of Omeprazole in Simple and Combined Pharmaceutical Preparations
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1016; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081016 - 18 Aug 2022
Viewed by 381
Abstract
TLC combined with densitometry was used and chromatographic conditions developed to separate omeprazole and diclofenac sodium from their potential impurities. The development of the TLC–densitometry method is based on the elaboration of new chromatographic conditions allowing for the simultaneous determination of omeprazole and [...] Read more.
TLC combined with densitometry was used and chromatographic conditions developed to separate omeprazole and diclofenac sodium from their potential impurities. The development of the TLC–densitometry method is based on the elaboration of new chromatographic conditions allowing for the simultaneous determination of omeprazole and diclofenac sodium in a pharmaceutical preparation. Identification and quantification of omeprazole in simple and combined (with diclofenac) pharmaceutical preparations was performed on silica gel 60F254 using one mobile phase: chloroform–methanol–ammonia (36:4:0.60, v/v). Diclofenac sodium was determined in the presence of omeprazole after 2D separation on silica gel using two mobile phases of the first phase of chloroform–methanol–ammonia (36:4:0.60, v/v) and the second mobile phase cyclohexane–chloroform–methanol–glacial acetic acid (6:3:0.5:0.5 v/v). The developed method is simple, economical, specific, precise, accurate, sensitive, and robust, with a good range of linearity for the quantification of omeprazole and diclofenac sodium. TLC in combination with densitometry can be used as an effective analytical tool for quality control and quantitative determination of omeprazole in simple and combined pharmaceutical preparations containing diclofenac sodium. TLC in combination with densitometry can be recommended for the analysis of omeprazole and diclofenac sodium in the absence of HPLC or spectrophotometer in the laboratory or to confirm results obtained with other analytical techniques. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Pharmaceutical Technology)
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Article
HMG-CoA Reductase Inhibitor Statins Activate the Transcriptional Activity of p53 by Regulating the Expression of TAZ
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1015; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081015 - 17 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 472
Abstract
Transcriptional coactivator with PDZ-binding motif (TAZ) is a downstream transcriptional regulator of the Hippo pathway that controls cell growth and differentiation. The aberrant activation of TAZ correlates with a poor prognosis in human cancers, such as breast and colon cancers. We previously demonstrated [...] Read more.
Transcriptional coactivator with PDZ-binding motif (TAZ) is a downstream transcriptional regulator of the Hippo pathway that controls cell growth and differentiation. The aberrant activation of TAZ correlates with a poor prognosis in human cancers, such as breast and colon cancers. We previously demonstrated that TAZ inhibited the tumor suppressor functions of p53 and enhanced cell proliferation. Statins, which are used to treat dyslipidemia, have been reported to suppress the activity of TAZ and exert anti-tumor effects. In the present study, we focused on the regulation of p53 functions by TAZ and investigated whether statins modulate these functions via TAZ. The results obtained suggest that statins, such as simvastatin and fluvastatin, activated the transcriptional function of p53 by suppressing TAZ protein expression. Furthermore, co-treatment with simvastatin and anti-tumor agents that cooperatively activate p53 suppressed cancer cell survival. These results indicate a useful mechanism by which statins enhance the effects of anti-tumor agents through the activation of p53 and may represent a novel approach to cancer therapy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Targeting p53 by Small Molecules: Application in Oncology)
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Article
Galangin Exhibits Neuroprotective Effects in 6-OHDA-Induced Models of Parkinson’s Disease via the Nrf2/Keap1 Pathway
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1014; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081014 - 17 Aug 2022
Viewed by 613
Abstract
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease, and there is still no cure for it. PD is characterized by the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons, and oxidative stress has been considered an important pathological mechanism. Therefore, the discovery of antioxidants to [...] Read more.
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease, and there is still no cure for it. PD is characterized by the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons, and oxidative stress has been considered an important pathological mechanism. Therefore, the discovery of antioxidants to alleviate the oxidative damage of dopaminergic neurons is a promising therapeutic strategy for PD. First, a network pharmacology approach was used, and nine common core targets of galangin and PD were screened, mainly involving cell aging, apoptosis, and cellular responses to hydrogen peroxide and hypoxia. In addition, the Gene Ontology (GO) function and pathway enrichment analysis of the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) identified apoptosis, PI3K/Akt, and HIF-1 signaling pathways. Furthermore, the molecular docking results revealed a strong affinity between galangin and the NFE2L2/Nrf2 protein. To validate the above predictions, we employed 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) to induce neuronal death in HT22 cells and Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans). MTT, cell morphology observation, and Hoechst 33342-PI staining results showed that galangin significantly increased the viability of 6-OHDA-treated HT22 cells. In addition, galangin inhibited 6-OHDA-induced ROS generation and apoptosis in HT22 cells. Mechanistic studies demonstrated that galangin activates the Nrf2/Keap1 signaling pathway, as evidenced by the decreased protein expression of Keap1 and increased protein expression of Nrf2 and HO-1. In the 6-OHDA-induced PD model of C. elegans, galangin indeed inhibited the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons, improved behavioral ability, and decreased ROS generation. In conclusion, the current study is the first to show that galangin has the capacity to inhibit neuronal degeneration via the Nrf2/Keap1 pathway, suggesting that galangin is a possible PD treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Pharmacology)
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Article
Efficacy of Kan Jang® in Patients with Mild COVID-19: Interim Analysis of a Randomized, Quadruple-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1013; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081013 - 17 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 623
Abstract
Kan Jang®, the fixed combination of Andrographis paniculata (Burm. F.) Wall. ex. Nees and Eleutherococcus senticosus (Rupr. & Maxim.) Maxim extracts, is a herbal medicinal product for relieving symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections. This study aimed to assess the efficacy [...] Read more.
Kan Jang®, the fixed combination of Andrographis paniculata (Burm. F.) Wall. ex. Nees and Eleutherococcus senticosus (Rupr. & Maxim.) Maxim extracts, is a herbal medicinal product for relieving symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections. This study aimed to assess the efficacy of Kan Jang®/Nergecov® on duration and the relief of inflammatory symptoms in adults with mild COVID-19. 86 patients with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 and mild symptoms for one to three days received supportive treatment (paracetamol) and six Kan Jang® (daily dose of andrographolides—90 mg) or placebo capsules a day for 14 consecutive days in this randomized, quadruple-blinded, placebo-controlled, two-parallel-group study. The primary efficacy outcomes were the decrease in the acute-phase duration and the severity of symptoms score (sore throat, runny nose, cough, headache, fatigue, loss of smell, taste, pain in muscles), an increase in cognitive functions, physical performance, quality of life, and decrease in IL-6, c-reactive protein, and D-dimer in blood. Kan Jang®/Nergecov® was effective in reducing the risk of progression to severe COVID-19, decreasing the disease progression rate by almost 2.5-fold compared to placebo. Absolute risk reduction by Kan Jang treatment is 14%, the relative risk reduction is 243.9%, and the number Needed to Treat is 7.14. Kan Jang®/Nergecov® reduces the duration of disease, virus clearance, and days of hospitalization and accelerates recovery of patients, relief of sore throat, muscle pain, runny nose, and normalization of body temperature. Kan Jang®/Nergecov® significantly relieves the severity of inflammatory symptoms such as sore throat, runny nose, and muscle pain, decreases pro-inflammatory cytokine IL-6 level in the blood, and increases patients’ physical performance (workout) compared to placebo. In this study, for the first time we demonstrate that Kan Jang®/Nergecov® is effective in treating mild COVID-19. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19 in Pharmaceuticals)
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Article
Neuroprotective Effect of Morin Hydrate against Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Induced by MSG and/or Protein Malnutrition in Rat Pups: Effect on Oxidative/Monoamines/Inflammatory Balance and Apoptosis
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1012; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081012 - 17 Aug 2022
Viewed by 440
Abstract
Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is one of the most widely used food additives. However, it has been linked to protein malnutrition (PM) and various forms of toxicities such as metabolic disorders and neurotoxic effects. The current study is the first to explore the association [...] Read more.
Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is one of the most widely used food additives. However, it has been linked to protein malnutrition (PM) and various forms of toxicities such as metabolic disorders and neurotoxic effects. The current study is the first to explore the association between MSG, PM, and induced brain injury similar to attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Moreover, we determined the underlying mechanistic protective pathways of morin hydrate (MH)―a natural flavonoid with reported multiple therapeutic properties. PM was induced by feeding animals with a low protein diet and confirmed by low serum albumin measurement. Subsequently, rat pups were randomized into seven groups of 10 rats each. Group I, III, and VI were normally fed (NF) and groups II, IV, V, and VII were PM fed. Group I served as normal control NF while Group II served as PM control animals. Group III received NF + 0.4 g/kg MSG, Group IV: PM + 0.4 g/kg MSG, Group V: PM + 60 mg/kg MH, Group VI: NF + 0.4 kg/g MSG + 60 mg/kg MH and Group VII: PM + 0.4 kg/kg MSG + 60 mg/kg MH. At the end of the experimental period, animals were subjected to behavioral and biochemical tests. Our results showed that treatment of rats with a combination of MSG + PM-fed exhibited inferior outcomes as evidenced by deteriorated effects on behavioral, neurochemical, and histopathological analyses when compared to rats who had received MSG or PM alone. Interestingly, MH improved animals’ behavior, increased brain monoamines, brain-derived neuroprotective factor (BDNF), antioxidant status and protein expression of Nrf2/HO-1. This also was accompanied by a significant decrease in brain MDA, inflammatory markers (NF-kB, TNF-α and IL1β), and suppression of TLR4/NLRP3/caspase-1 axis. Taken together, MSG and/or PM are associated with neuronal dysfunction. Our findings suggest MH as a potential neuroprotective agent against brain insults via targeting Nrf2/HO-1 and hindering TLR4/NLRP3 inflammasome signaling pathways. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Pharmacology)
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Article
Co-Occurrence of β-Lactam and Aminoglycoside Resistance Determinants among Clinical and Environmental Isolates of Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli: A Genomic Approach
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1011; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081011 - 17 Aug 2022
Viewed by 454
Abstract
The presence of antimicrobial-resistance genes (ARGs) in mobile genetic elements (MGEs) facilitates the rapid development and dissemination of multidrug-resistant bacteria, which represents a serious problem for human health. This is a One Health study which aims to investigate the co-occurrence of antimicrobial resistance [...] Read more.
The presence of antimicrobial-resistance genes (ARGs) in mobile genetic elements (MGEs) facilitates the rapid development and dissemination of multidrug-resistant bacteria, which represents a serious problem for human health. This is a One Health study which aims to investigate the co-occurrence of antimicrobial resistance determinants among clinical and environmental isolates of K. pneumoniae and E. coli. Various bioinformatics tools were used to elucidate the bacterial strains’ ID, resistome, virulome, MGEs, and phylogeny for 42 isolates obtained from hospitalized patients (n = 20) and environmental sites (including fresh vegetables, fruits, and drinking water) (n = 22). The multilocus sequence typing (MLST) showed that K. pneumoniae belonged to ten sequence types (STs) while the E. coli belonged to seventeen STs. Multidrug-resistant isolates harbored β-lactam, aminoglycoside resistance determinants, and MGE were detected circulating in the environment (drinking water, fresh vegetables, and fruits) and in patients hospitalized with postoperative infections, neonatal sepsis, and urinary tract infection. Four K. pneumoniae environmental isolates (7E, 16EE, 1KE, and 19KE) were multidrug-resistant and were positive for different beta-lactam and aminoglycoside resistance determinants. blaCTX-M-15 in brackets of ISEc 9 and Tn 3 transposases was detected in isolates circulating in the pediatrics unit of Soba hospital and the environment. This study documented the presence of bacterial isolates harboring a similar pattern of antimicrobial resistance determinants circulating in hospitals and environments. A rapid response is needed from stakeholders to initiate a program for infection prevention and control measures to detect such clones disseminated in the communities and hospitals. Full article
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Article
A Study on Repositioning Nalidixic Acid via Lanthanide Complexation: Synthesis, Characterization, Cytotoxicity and DNA/Protein Binding Studies
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1010; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081010 - 17 Aug 2022
Viewed by 352
Abstract
“Drug repositioning” is a modern strategy used to uncover new applications for out-of-date drugs. In this context, nalidixic acid, the first member of the quinolone class with limited use today, has been selected to obtain nine new metal complexes with lanthanide cations (La [...] Read more.
“Drug repositioning” is a modern strategy used to uncover new applications for out-of-date drugs. In this context, nalidixic acid, the first member of the quinolone class with limited use today, has been selected to obtain nine new metal complexes with lanthanide cations (La3+, Sm3+, Eu3+, Gd3+, Tb3+); the experimental data suggest that the quinolone acts as a bidentate ligand, binding to the metal ion via the keto and carboxylate oxygen atoms, findings that are supported by DFT calculations. The cytotoxic activity of the complexes has been studied using the tumoral cell lines, MDA-MB-231 and LoVo, and a normal cell line, HUVEC. The most active compounds of the series display selective activity against LoVo. Their affinity for DNA and the manner of binding have been tested using UV–Vis spectroscopy and competitive binding studies; our results indicate that major and minor groove binding play a significant role in these interactions. The affinity towards serum proteins has also been evaluated, the complexes displaying higher affinity towards albumin than apotransferrin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metal-Based Agents in Drug Discovery)
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Review
Multicomponent Reactions for the Synthesis of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1009; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081009 - 17 Aug 2022
Viewed by 458
Abstract
Multicomponent reactions 9i.e., those that engage three or more starting materials to form a product that contains significant fragments of all of them), have been widely employed in the construction of compound libraries, especially in the context of diversity-oriented synthesis. While relatively less [...] Read more.
Multicomponent reactions 9i.e., those that engage three or more starting materials to form a product that contains significant fragments of all of them), have been widely employed in the construction of compound libraries, especially in the context of diversity-oriented synthesis. While relatively less exploited, their use in target-oriented synthesis offers significant advantages in terms of synthetic efficiency. This review provides a critical summary of the use of multicomponent reactions for the preparation of active pharmaceutical principles. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Multicomponent and Domino Reactions in Drug Discovery)
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Article
Neuroprotective Effects of Phytochemicals against Aluminum Chloride-Induced Alzheimer’s Disease through ApoE4/LRP1, Wnt3/β-Catenin/GSK3β, and TLR4/NLRP3 Pathways with Physical and Mental Activities in a Rat Model
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1008; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081008 - 17 Aug 2022
Viewed by 728
Abstract
Background: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder that is associated with abnormal cognition. AD is aided in its initiation and progression by hereditary and environmental factors. Aluminum (Al) is a neurotoxic agent that causes oxidative stress, which is linked to AD progression. [...] Read more.
Background: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder that is associated with abnormal cognition. AD is aided in its initiation and progression by hereditary and environmental factors. Aluminum (Al) is a neurotoxic agent that causes oxidative stress, which is linked to AD progression. Additionally, Nrf2/HO-1, APOE4/LRP1, Wnt3/β-catenin, and TLR4/NLRP3 are the main signaling pathways involved in AD pathogenesis. Several phytochemicals are promising options in delaying AD evolution. Objectives: This study aimed at studying the neuroprotective effects of some phytochemicals as morin (MOR), thymol (TML), and thymoquinone (TMQ) on physical and mental activities (PhM) in Al chloride (AlCl3)-induced AD rat model. Another objective was to determine the specificity of phytochemicals to AD signaling pathways using molecular docking. Methods: Eighty male Dawley rats were divided into eight groups. Each group received: saline (control group), AlCl3, (ALAD), PhM, either alone or with a combination of MOR, TML, and/or TMQ for five weeks. Animals were then subjected to behavioral evaluation. Brain tissues were used for histopathological and biochemical analyses to determine the extent of neurodegeneration. The effect of phytochemicals on AlCl3-induced oxidative stress and the main signaling pathways involved in AD progression were also investigated. Results: AlCl3 caused a decline in spatial learning and memory, as well as histopathological changes in the brains of rats. Phytochemicals combined with PhM restored antioxidant activities, increased HO-1 and Nrf2 levels, blocked inflammasome activation, apoptosis, TLR4 expression, amyloide-β generation, and tau hyperphophorylation. They also brought ApoE4 and LRP1 levels back to normal and regulated Wnt3/β-catenin/GSK3β signaling pathway. Conclusions: The use of phytochemicals with PhM is a promising strategy for reducing AD by modulating Nrf2/HO-1, TLR4/NLRP3, APOE4/LRP1, and Wnt3/β-catenin/GSK-3β signaling pathways. Full article
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Review
Pharmaceutical Prevention and Management of Cardiotoxicity in Hematological Malignancies
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1007; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081007 - 16 Aug 2022
Viewed by 552
Abstract
Modern treatment modalities in hematology have improved clinical outcomes of patients with hematological malignancies. Nevertheless, many new or conventional anticancer drugs affect the cardiovascular system, resulting in various cardiac disorders, including left ventricular dysfunction, heart failure, arterial hypertension, myocardial ischemia, cardiac rhythm disturbances, [...] Read more.
Modern treatment modalities in hematology have improved clinical outcomes of patients with hematological malignancies. Nevertheless, many new or conventional anticancer drugs affect the cardiovascular system, resulting in various cardiac disorders, including left ventricular dysfunction, heart failure, arterial hypertension, myocardial ischemia, cardiac rhythm disturbances, and QTc prolongation on electrocardiograms. As these complications may jeopardize the significantly improved outcome of modern anticancer therapies, it is crucial to become familiar with all aspects of cardiotoxicity and provide appropriate care promptly to these patients. In addition, established and new drugs contribute to primary and secondary cardiovascular diseases prevention. This review focuses on the clinical manifestations, preventive strategies, and pharmaceutical management of cardiotoxicity in patients with hematologic malignancies undergoing anticancer drug therapy or hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Full article
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Article
Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of Indole-2-Carboxamides with Potent Apoptotic Antiproliferative Activity as EGFR/CDK2 Dual Inhibitors
Pharmaceuticals 2022, 15(8), 1006; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph15081006 - 16 Aug 2022
Viewed by 459
Abstract
The apoptotic antiproliferative actions of our previously reported CB1 allosteric modulators 5-chlorobenzofuran-2-carboxamide derivatives VIIaj prompted us to develop and synthesise a novel series of indole-2-carboxamide derivatives 5ak, 6ac, and 7. Different spectroscopic methods of [...] Read more.
The apoptotic antiproliferative actions of our previously reported CB1 allosteric modulators 5-chlorobenzofuran-2-carboxamide derivatives VIIaj prompted us to develop and synthesise a novel series of indole-2-carboxamide derivatives 5ak, 6ac, and 7. Different spectroscopic methods of analysis were used to validate the novel compounds. Using the MTT assay method, the novel compounds were examined for antiproliferative activity against four distinct cancer cell lines. Compounds 5ak, 6ac, and 7 demonstrated greater antiproliferative activity against the breast cancer cell line (MCF-7) than other tested cancer cell lines, and 5ak (which contain the phenethyl moiety in their backbone structure) demonstrated greater potency than 6ac and 7, indicating the importance of the phenethyl moiety for antiproliferative action. Compared to reference doxorubicin (GI50 = 1.10 µM), compounds 5d, 5e, 5h, 5i, 5j, and 5k were the most effective of the synthesised derivatives, with GI50 ranging from 0.95 µM to 1.50 µM. Compounds 5d, 5e, 5h, 5i, 5j, and 5k were tested for their inhibitory impact on EGFR and CDK2, and the results indicated that the compounds tested had strong antiproliferative activity and are effective at suppressing both CDK2 and EGFR. Moreover, the studied compounds induced apoptosis with high potency, as evidenced by their effects on apoptotic markers such as Caspases 3, 8, 9, Cytochrome C, Bax, Bcl2, and p53. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Anti-proliferative Agents)
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