Design, synthesis and biological evaluation of small molecule inhibitors of CD4-gp120 binding based on virtual screening.
ABSTRACT: The low-molecular-weight compound JRC-II-191 inhibits infection of HIV-1 by blocking the binding of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein gp120 to the CD4 receptor and is therefore an important lead in the development of a potent viral entry inhibitor. Reported here is the use of two orthogonal screening methods, gold docking and ROCS shape-based similarity searching, to identify amine-building blocks that, when conjugated to the core scaffold, yield novel analogs that maintain similar affinity for gp120. Use of this computational approach to expand SAR produced analogs of equal inhibitory activity but with diverse capacity to enhance viral infection. The novel analogs provide additional lead scaffolds for the development of HIV-1 entry inhibitors that employ protein-ligand interactions in the vestibule of gp120 Phe 43 cavity.
Project description:Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1) interaction with the primary receptor, CD4, induces conformational changes in the viral envelope glycoproteins that allow binding to the CCR5 second receptor and virus entry into the host cell. The small molecule NBD-556 mimics CD4 by binding the gp120 exterior envelope glycoprotein, moderately inhibiting virus entry into CD4-expressing target cells and enhancing CCR5 binding and virus entry into CCR5-expressing cells lacking CD4. Studies of NBD-556 analogs and gp120 mutants suggest that (1) NBD-556 binds within the Phe 43 cavity, a highly conserved, functionally important pocket formed as gp120 assumes the CD4-bound conformation; (2) the NBD-556 phenyl ring projects into the Phe 43 cavity; (3) enhancement of CD4-independent infection by NBD-556 requires the induction of conformational changes in gp120; and (4) increased affinity of NBD-556 analogs for gp120 improves antiviral potency during infection of CD4-expressing cells.
Project description:Efforts to develop therapeutic agents that inhibit HIV-1 entry have led to the identification of several small molecule leads. One of the most promising is the NBD series, which binds within a conserved gp120 cavity and possesses para-halogen substituted aromatic rings, a central oxalamide linker, and a tetramethylpiperidine moiety. In this study, we characterized structurally the interactions of four NBD analogues containing meta-fluoro substitution on the aromatic ring and various heterocyclic ring replacements of the tetramethylpiperidine group. The addition of a meta-fluorine to the aromatic ring improved surface complementarity and did not alter the position of the analogue relative to gp120. By contrast, heterocyclic ring replacements of the tetramethylpiperidine moiety exhibited diverse positioning and interactions with the vestibule of the gp120 cavity. Overall, the biological profile of NBD-congeners was modulated by ligand interactions with the gp120-cavity vestibule. Herein, six co-crystal structures of NBD-analogues with gp120 provide a structural framework for continued small molecule-entry inhibitor optimization.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:The HIV-1 gp120 envelope (Env) glycoprotein mediates attachment of virus to human target cells that display requisite receptors, CD4 and co-receptor, generally CCR5. Despite high-affinity interactions with host receptors and proof-of-principle by the drug maraviroc that interference with CCR5 provides therapeutic benefit, no licensed drug currently targets gp120. AREAS COVERED:An overview of the role of gp120 in HIV-1 entry and of sites of potential gp120 vulnerability to therapeutic inhibition is presented. Viral defenses that protect these sites and turn gp120 into a moving labyrinth are discussed together with strategies for circumventing these defenses to allow therapeutic targeting of gp120 sites of vulnerability. EXPERT OPINION:The gp120 envelope glycoprotein interacts with host proteins through multiple interfaces and has conserved structural features at these interaction sites. In spite of this, targeting gp120 for therapeutic purposes is challenging. Env mechanisms that have evolved to evade the humoral immune response also shield it from potential therapeutics. Nevertheless, substantial progress has been made in understanding HIV-1 gp120 structure and its interactions with host receptors, and in developing therapeutic leads that potently neutralize diverse HIV-1 strains. Synergies between advances in understanding, needs for therapeutics against novel viral targets and characteristics of breadth and potency for a number of gp120-targetting lead molecules bodes well for gp120 as a HIV-1 therapeutic target.
Project description:Binding to the CD4 receptor induces conformational changes in the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1) gp120 exterior envelope glycoprotein. These changes allow gp120 to bind the coreceptor, either CCR5 or CXCR4, and prime the gp41 transmembrane envelope glycoprotein to mediate virus-cell membrane fusion and virus entry. Soluble forms of CD4 (sCD4) and small-molecule CD4 mimics (here exemplified by JRC-II-191) also induce these conformational changes in the HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins, but typically inhibit HIV-1 entry into CD4-expressing cells. To investigate the mechanism of inhibition, we monitored at high temporal resolution inhibitor-induced changes in the conformation and functional competence of the HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins that immediately follow engagement of the soluble CD4 mimics. Both sCD4 and JRC-II-191 efficiently activated the envelope glycoproteins to mediate infection of cells lacking CD4, in a manner dependent on coreceptor affinity and density. This activated state, however, was transient and was followed by spontaneous and apparently irreversible changes of conformation and by loss of functional competence. The longevity of the activated intermediate depended on temperature and the particular HIV-1 strain, but was indistinguishable for sCD4 and JRC-II-191; by contrast, the activated intermediate induced by cell-surface CD4 was relatively long-lived. The inactivating effects of these activation-based inhibitors predominantly affected cell-free virus, whereas virus that was prebound to the target cell surface was mainly activated, infecting the cells even at high concentrations of the CD4 analogue. These results demonstrate the ability of soluble CD4 mimics to inactivate HIV-1 by prematurely triggering active but transient intermediate states of the envelope glycoproteins. This novel strategy for inhibition may be generally applicable to high-potential-energy viral entry machines that are normally activated by receptor binding.
Project description:HIV/AIDS is a global pandemic for which new treatment strategies are desperately needed. We have designed a novel small molecule, designated as ARM-H, that has the potential to interfere with HIV survival through two mechanisms: (1) by recruiting antibodies to gp120-expressing virus particles and infected human cells, thus enhancing their uptake and destruction by the human immune system, and (2) by binding the viral glycoprotein gp120, inhibiting its interaction with the human protein CD4 and preventing virus entry. Here we demonstrate that ARM-H is capable of simultaneously binding gp120, a component of the Env surface viral glycoprotein (found on the surface of both HIV and virus-infected cells) and anti-2,4-dinitrophenyl antibodies (already present in the human bloodstream). The ternary complex formed between the antibody, ARM-H, and gp120 is immunologically active and leads to the complement-mediated destruction of Env-expressing cells. Furthermore, ARM-H prevents virus entry into human T-cells and should therefore be capable of inhibiting virus replication through two mutually reinforcing mechanisms (inhibition of virus entry and antibody-mediated killing). These studies demonstrate the viable anti-HIV activity of antibody-recruiting small molecules and have the potential to initiate novel paradigms in HIV treatment.
Project description:HIV-1 cell entry is initiated by the interaction of the viral envelope glycoprotein gp120 with CD4, and chemokine coreceptors CXCR4 and CCR5. The molecular recognition of CXCR4 or CCR5 by the HIV-1 gp120 is mediated through the V3 loop, a fragment of gp120. The binding of the V3 loop to CXCR4 or CCR5 determines the cell tropism of HIV-1 and constitutes a key step before HIV-1 cell entry. Thus, elucidating the molecular recognition of CXCR4 by the V3 loop is important for understanding HIV-1 viral infectivity and tropism, and for the design of HIV-1 inhibitors. We employed a comprehensive set of computational tools, predominantly based on free energy calculations and molecular-dynamics simulations, to investigate the molecular recognition of CXCR4 by a dual tropic V3 loop. We report what is, to our knowledge, the first HIV-1 gp120 V3 loop:CXCR4 complex structure. The computationally derived structure reveals an abundance of polar and nonpolar intermolecular interactions contributing to the HIV-1 gp120:CXCR4 binding. Our results are in remarkable agreement with previous experimental findings. Therefore, this work sheds light on the functional role of HIV-1 gp120 V3 loop and CXCR4 residues associated with HIV-1 coreceptor activity.
Project description:The importance of the N-terminal region of HIV gp120 conserved domain 1 (gp120-C1) to envelope function has been examined by alanine-scanning mutagenesis and subsequent characterization of the mutagenic effects on viral entry; envelope expression, processing, and incorporation; and gp120 association with gp41. With respect to the wild-type gp120, mutational effects on viral entry fall into two classes: functional, as defined by >20% entry with respect to wild type, and impaired, as defined by <20% entry with respect to wild type. Based on Western blot analyses of cell lysates and virions, the entry impairment of W35A, V38A, Y39A, Y40A, G41A, V42A, and I52A is due primarily to disruption of envelope processing. The entry impairment of P43A and W45A is apparently due to a combination of effects on processing and incorporation into virions. In contrast, the entry impairment of V44A and F53A is primarily due to disruption of the gp120-gp41 interaction, which results in dissociation of gp120 from the virion. We present a model for gp120-C1 interactions with gp120-C5 and the gp41 disulfide loop in unprocessed gp160 and processed gp120/gp41.
Project description:We report the mode of action of a proteomimetic compound that binds to the exterior surface of gp120 and blocks HIV-1 entry into cells. Using a one cycle time-of-addition study and antibody competition binding studies, we have determined that the compound blocks HIV-1 entry through modulation of key protein-protein interactions mediated by gp120. The compound exhibits anti-HIV-1 replication activities against several pseudotype viruses derived from primary isolates and the resistant strains isolated from existing drug candidates with equal potency. Together, these data provide evidence that the proteomimetic compound represents a novel class of HIV-1 viral entry inhibitor that functions through protein surface recognition in analogy to an antibody.
Project description:We recently reported that palmitic acid (PA) is a novel and efficient CD4 fusion inhibitor to HIV-1 entry and infection. In the present report, based on in silico modeling of the novel CD4 pocket that binds PA, we describe discovery of highly potent PA analogs with increased CD4 receptor binding affinities (K(d)) and gp120-to-CD4 inhibition constants (K(i)). The PA analogs were selected to satisfy Lipinski's rule of drug-likeness, increased solubility, and to avoid potential cytotoxicity.PA analog 2-bromopalmitate (2-BP) was most efficacious with K(d) approximately 74 nM and K(i) approximately 122 nM, ascorbyl palmitate (6-AP) exhibited slightly higher K(d) approximately 140 nM and K(i) approximately 354 nM, and sucrose palmitate (SP) was least efficacious binding to CD4 with K(d) approximately 364 nM and inhibiting gp120-to-CD4 binding with K(i) approximately 1486 nM. Importantly, PA and its analogs specifically bound to the CD4 receptor with the one to one stoichiometry.Considering observed differences between K(i) and K(d) values indicates clear and rational direction for improving inhibition efficacy to HIV-1 entry and infection. Taken together this report introduces a novel class of natural small molecules fusion inhibitors with nanomolar efficacy of CD4 receptor binding and inhibition of HIV-1 entry.
Project description:HIV envelope glycoproteins undergo large-scale conformational changes as they interact with cellular receptors to cause the fusion of viral and cellular membranes that permits viral entry to infect targeted cells. Conformational dynamics in HIV gp120 are also important in masking conserved receptor epitopes from being detected for effective neutralization by the human immune system. Crystal structures of HIV gp120 and its complexes with receptors and antibody fragments provide high-resolution pictures of selected conformational states accessible to gp120. Here we describe systematic computational analyses of HIV gp120 plasticity in such complexes with CD4 binding fragments, CD4 mimetic proteins, and various antibody fragments. We used three computational approaches: an isotropic elastic network analysis of conformational plasticity, a full atomic normal mode analysis, and simulation of conformational transitions with our coarse-grained virtual atom molecular mechanics (VAMM) potential function. We observe collective sub-domain motions about hinge points that coordinate those motions, correlated local fluctuations at the interfacial cavity formed when gp120 binds to CD4, and concerted changes in structural elements that form at the CD4 interface during large-scale conformational transitions to the CD4-bound state from the deformed states of gp120 in certain antibody complexes.