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Scripps Research scientists find two compounds that lay the foundation for a new class of AIDS drug
Date:2/3/2010

sites on the molecule.

To overcome this problem, the team "plugged up" the active site with a known inhibitor so that the screen would identify only fragments that bound to other regions of the protease. Perryman noted that this innovative protocol could be applied to similar work on many different disease-causing agents, especially those that have developed drug resistance.

Using the new method for crystallographic screening, the team found two "hits"fragments 2-methylcyclohexanol and indole-6-carboxylic acid. The scientists used additional x-ray crystallographic experiments to confirm first that the fragments indeed bound to novel sites in the protease and second that these fragments change the structural preferences of protease.

"Since these fragments are very small, we wouldn't expect them to be potent inhibitors by themselves," said Perryman. "But it's the beginning of a process where we can try to use these little fragments to build up to a real potent inhibitor. The study validates our predictions and lays the structural foundation for the development of new classes of anti-AIDS drugs."


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Contact: Keith McKeown
kmckeown@scripps.edu
858-784-8134
Scripps Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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