Chemists Devise New Way to Prepare Molecules for Drug Testing
News Aug 19, 2013
James Bond had his reasons for ordering his martinis “shaken, not stirred.” Similarly, drug manufacturers need to make sure the molecules in a new drug are arranged in an exact manner, lest there be dire consequences. Specifically, they need to be wary of enantiomers, mirror-image molecules composed of the same atoms, but arranged differently.
“One mirror image could be therapeutic while another could be poisonous,” said Dr. Mark R. Biscoe, assistant professor of chemistry at The City College of New York. The classic case is thalidomide, a drug marketed in the 1950s and 1960s to treat morning sickness, which resulted in serious birth defects.
Professor Biscoe led a team of researchers at CCNY that developed a new method for preparing libraries of single-enantiomer molecules for therapeutic and toxicity studies that is faster and potentially less costly than methods now used in the pharmaceutical industry. Their findings were reported in Nature Chemistry.
Currently, drug developers typically rely on a chiral resolution process whereby compounds with roughly equal parts of the two enantiomers are separated into the individual enantiomers. Bioenzymatic processes can also be employed to generate single-enantiomer molecules. These strategies are wasteful and costly, Professor Biscoe explained.
He and colleagues found that a metal such as palladium could be employed to achieve a cross-coupling reaction with a single-enantiomer molecule without impacting the integrity of the mirror image formed in the product. By doing so, they could isolate one mirror image for evaluation as a drug candidate.
“By using a single-enantiomer partner in a cross-coupling reaction, we can rapidly generate a diverse library of biologically active molecules for use in drug screening,” he said.
The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health, City College, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and PSC-CUNY, with additional support from the National Science Foundation and the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund.
A team of researchers has discovered a combination of pharmaceutical drugs that not only increases healthy lifespan in the microscopic worm Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), but also delays the rate of ageing in them, a finding that could someday mean longer, healthier lives for humans.READ MORE
In new studies a novel oxygen-delivery therapeutic restored the function of oxygen-starved heart tissue in an animal model of global hypoxia. Unlike its experimental predecessors, the new drug does not appear to cause systemic side effects or overcorrect with excessive blood oxygenation, which can itself be toxic. Instead, the new drug delivers its precious oxygen cargo only to the tissues that need it most.READ MORE
2nd AI Pharma Innovation: Drug Discovery 2019 Summit
Feb 27 - Feb 28, 2019
5th International Congress on Epigenetics & Chromatin
Aug 22 - Aug 23, 2019
14th World Congress on Medicinal Chemistry and Drug Design
Jun 10 - Jun 11, 2019
International Conference on e-Health and Healthcare Innovations
May 08 - May 09, 2019