A sucrose-derived scaffold for multimerization of bioactive peptides.
ABSTRACT: A spherical molecular scaffold bearing eight terminal alkyne groups was synthesized in one step from sucrose. One or more copies of a tetrapeptide azide, either N(3)(CH(2))(5)(CO)-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-NH(2) (MSH4) or N(3)(CH(2))(5)(CO)-Trp-Met-Asp-Phe-NH(2) (CCK4), were attached to the scaffold via the copper(I)-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition (CuAAC) reaction. Competitive binding assays using Eu-labeled probes based on the superpotent ligands Ser-Tyr-Ser-Nle-Glu-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-Gly-Lys-Pro-Val-NH(2) (NDP-?-MSH) and Asp-Tyr-Met-Gly-Trp-Met-Asp-Phe-NH(2) (CCK8) were used to study the interactions of monovalent and multivalent MSH4 and CCK4 constructs with Hek293 cells engineered to overexpress MC4R and CCK2R. All of the monovalent and multivalent MSH4 constructs exhibited binding comparable to that of the parental ligand, suggesting that either the ligand spacing was inappropriate for multivalent binding, or MSH4 is too weak a binder for a second 'anchoring' binding event to occur before the monovalently-bound construct is released from the cell surface. In contrast with this behavior, monovalent CCK4 constructs were significantly less potent than the parental ligand, while multivalent CCK4 constructs were as or more potent than the parental ligand. These results are suggestive of multivalent binding, which may be due to increased residence times for monovalently bound CCK4 constructs on the cell surface relative to MSH4 constructs, the greater residence time being necessary for the establishment of multivalent binding.
Project description:Linear and cyclic analogues of the ?-melanocyte stimulating hormone (?-MSH) targeting the human melanocortin receptor 1 (MC1R) are of pharmacological interest for detecting and treating melanoma. The central sequence of ?-MSH (His-Phe-Arg-Trp) has been identified as being essential for receptor binding. To deepen current knowledge on the molecular basis for ?-MSH bioactivity, we aimed to understand the effect of cycle size on receptor binding. To that end, we synthesised two macrocyclic isomeric ?-MSH analogues, c[NH-NO?-C?H?-CO-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-Lys]-Lys-NH? (CycN-K6) and c[NH-NO?-C?H?-CO-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-Lys-Lys]-NH? (CycN-K7). Their affinities to MC1R receptor were determined by competitive binding assays, and their structures were analysed by ¹H and 13C NMR. These results were compared to those of the previously reported analogue c[S-NO?-C?H?-CO-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-Cys]-Lys-NH? (CycS-C6). The MC1R binding affinity of the 22-membered macrocyclic peptide CycN-K6 (IC50 = 155 ± 16 nM) is higher than that found for the 25-membered macrocyclic analogue CycN-K7 (IC50 = 495 ± 101 nM), which, in turn, is higher than that observed for the 19-membered cyclic analogue CycS-C6 (IC50 = 1770 ± 480 nM). NMR structural study indicated that macrocycle size leads to changes in the relative dispositions of the side chains, particularly in the packing of the Arg side chain relative to the aromatic rings. In contrast to the other analogues, the 22-membered cycle's side chains are favorably positioned for receptor interaction.
Project description:Oligomers incorporating the tetrapeptide MSH4, the minimum active sequence of melanocyte stimulating hormone, were synthesized by an A2 + B2 strategy involving microwave-assisted copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition. A2 contained an MSH4 core while B2 contained a (Pro-Gly)3 spacer. Soluble mixtures containing compounds with up to eight MSH4 units were obtained from oligomerizations at high monomer concentrations. The avidities of several oligomeric mixtures were evaluated by means of a competitive binding assay using HEK293 cells engineered to overexpress the melanocortin 4 receptor. When based on total MSH4 concentrations, avidities were only minimally enhanced compared with a monovalent control. The lack of variation in the effect of ligands on probe binding is consistent with high off rates for MSH4 in both monovalent and oligomeric constructs relative to that of the competing probe.
Project description:The melanocortin receptors are involved in many physiological functions, including pigmentation, sexual function, feeding behavior, and energy homeostasis, making them potential targets to treat obesity, sexual dysfunction, etc. Understanding the basis of the ligand-receptor interactions is crucial for the design of potent and selective ligands for these receptors. The conformational preferences of the cyclic melanocortin ligands MTII (Ac-Nle(4)-c[Asp(5)-His(6)-DPhe(7)-Arg(8)-Trp(9)-Lys(10)]-NH(2)) and SHU9119 (Ac-Nle(4)-c[Asp(5)-His(6)-DNal(2')(7)-Arg(8)-Trp(9)-Lys(10)]-NH(2)), which show agonist and antagonist activity at the h-MC4R, respectively, were comprehensively investigated by solution NMR spectroscopy in different environments. In particular, water and water/DMSO (8:2) solutions were used as isotropic solutions and an aqueous solution of DPC (dodecylphosphocholine) micelles was used as a membrane mimetic environment. NMR-derived conformations of these two ligands were docked within h-MC4R models. NMR and docking studies revealed intriguing differences which can help explain the different activities of these two ligands.
Project description:The incidence of malignant melanoma is rising faster than that of any other cancer in the United States. Because of its high expression on the surface of melanomas, MC1R has been investigated as a target for selective imaging and therapeutic agents against melanoma. Eight ligands were screened against cell lines engineered to overexpress MC1R, MC4R, or MC5R. Of these, compound 1 (4-phenylbutyryl-His-dPhe-Arg-Trp-NH(2)) exhibited high (0.2 nM) binding affinity for MC1R and low (high nanomolar) affinities for MC4R and MC5R. Functionalization of the ligand at the C-terminus with an alkyne for use in Cu-catalyzed click chemistry was shown not to affect the binding affinity. Finally, formation of the targeted polymer, as well as the targeted micelle formulation, also resulted in constructs with low nanomolar binding affinity.
Project description:The melanocortin-3 and -4 receptors (MC3R, MC4R) have been implicated in energy homeostasis and obesity. Whereas the physiological role of the MC4R is extensively studied, little is known about the MC3R. One caveat is the limited availability of ligands that are selective for the MC3R. Previous studies identified Ac-His-DPhe(p-I)-Arg-Trp-NH 2, which possessed partial agonist/antagonist pharmacology at the mMC3R while retaining full nanomolar agonist pharmacology at the mMC4R. These data allowed for the hypothesis that the DPhe position in melanocortin tetrapeptides can be used to examine ligand side-chain determinants important for differentiation of mMC3R agonist versus antagonist activity. A series of 15 DPhe (7) modified Ac-His-DPhe (7)-Arg-Trp-NH 2 tetrapeptides has been synthesized and pharmacologically characterized. Most notable results include the identification of modifications that resulted in potent antagonists/partial agonists at the mMC3R and full, potent agonists at the mMC4R. These SAR studies provide experimental evidence that the molecular mechanism of antagonism at the mMC3R differentiates this subtype from the mMC4R.
Project description:A flexible molecular scaffold bearing varying numbers of terminal alkyne groups was synthesized in five steps from solanesol. R(CO)-MSH(4)-NH(2) ligands, which have a relatively low affinity for binding at the human melanocortin 4 receptor (hMC4R), were prepared by solid phase synthesis and were N-terminally acylated with 6-azidohexanoic acid. Multiple copies of the azide N(3)(CH(2))(5)(CO)-MSH(4)-NH(2) were attached to the alkyne-bearing, solanesol-derived molecular scaffold via the copper(I)-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition (CuAAC) reaction. Control studies showed that the binding affinity of the triazole-containing ligand, CH(3)(CH(2))(3)(C(2)N(3))(CH(2))(5)(CO)-MSH(4)-NH(2), was not significantly diminished relative to the corresponding parental ligand, CH(3)(CO)-MSH(4)-NH(2). In a competitive binding assay with a Eu-labeled probe based on the superpotent ligand NDP-alpha-MSH, the monovalent and multivalent constructs appear to bind to hMC4R as monovalent species. In a similar assay with a Eu-labeled probe based on MSH(4), modest increases in binding potency with increased MSH(4) content per scaffold were observed.
Project description:Mice infected with vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV), a cytopathic virus closely related to rabies virus, mount a virus-neutralizing antibody response protecting against lethal disease. VSVneutralizing monoclonal IgGs isolated from primary immune responses were devoid of somatic mutations, whereas most secondary and all hyperimmune response IgGs tested were hypermutated. A comparative analysis of recombinant single-chain antibody fragments (scFv-Ckappa) revealed that even the germ-line precursor of one hypermutated antibody bound and neutralized VSV. Four somatic amino acid substitutions in V(H) increased by 300-fold the binding strength of monovalent scFv-Ckappa. The multivalent binding avidity of germ-line scFv-Ckappa was increased by more than 10-fold compared with the monovalent binding strength. In contrast, hypermutated scFv-Ckappa did not show such avidity effects. Thus the overall binding difference between the germ-line and the hypermutated VSV-neutralizing antibody was only 10- to 15-fold. This may explain why primary germ-line antibodies and secondary hypermutated antibodies directed against pathogens such as viruses and bacteria expressing repetitive antibody determinants show rather similar binding qualities, whereas monovalently binding hapten-specific antibodies can show "affinity maturation" effects of up to 1000-fold.
Project description:Bivalent ligands targeting putative melanocortin receptor dimers have been developed and characterized in vitro; however, studies of their functional in vivo effects have been limited. The current report compares the effects of homobivalent ligand CJL-1-87, Ac-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-PEDG20-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-NH2, to monovalent ligand CJL-1-14, Ac-His-DPhe-Arg-Trp-NH2, on energy homeostasis in mice after central intracerebroventricular (ICV) administration into the lateral ventricle of the brain. Bivalent ligand CJL-1-87 had noteworthy advantages as an antiobesity probe over CJL-1-14 in a fasting-refeeding in vivo paradigm. Treatment with CJL-1-87 significantly decreased food intake compared to CJL-1-14 or saline (50% less intake 2-8 h after treatment). Furthermore, CJL-1-87 treatment decreased the respiratory exchange ratio (RER) without changing the energy expenditure indicating that fats were being burned as the primary fuel source. Additionally, CJL-1-87 treatment significantly lowered body fat mass percentage 6 h after administration (p < 0.05) without changing the lean mass percentage. The bivalent ligand significantly decreased insulin, C-peptide, leptin, GIP, and resistin plasma levels compared to levels after CJL-1-14 or saline treatments. Alternatively, ghrelin plasma levels were significantly increased. Serum stability of CJL-1-87 and CJL-1-14 (T1/2 = 6.0 and 16.8 h, respectively) was sufficient to permit physiological effects. The differences in binding affinity of CJL-1-14 compared to CJL-1-87 are speculated as a possible mechanism for the bivalent ligand's unique effects. We also provide in vitro evidence for the formation of a MC3R-MC4R heterodimer complex, for the first time to our knowledge, that may be an unexploited neuronal molecular target. Regardless of the exact mechanism, the advantageous ability of CJL-1-87 compared to CJL-1-14 to increase in vitro binding affinity, increase the duration of action in spite of decreased serum stability, decrease in vivo food intake, decrease mice's body fat percent, and differentially affect mouse hormone levels demonstrates the distinct characteristics achieved from the current melanocortin agonist bivalent design strategy.
Project description:PURPOSE: Cholecystokinin 2 (CCK-2) receptor overexpression has been demonstrated in a high percentage of medullary thyroid carcinomas (MTC). Analogous to somatostatin receptors, CCK-2 receptors might be viable targets for radionuclide scintigraphy and/or radionuclide therapy. Several CCK-2 receptor-binding radiopeptides have been developed, and some have been carried through into clinical studies. However, these studies are mostly limited and difficult to compare. The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic and therapeutic potential of three promising CCK-2 receptor-binding radiopeptides in patients with MTC. METHODS: (111)In-DOTA-(D: )Asp-Tyr-Nle-Gly-Trp-Nle-Asp-Phe-NH(2) ((111)In-DOTA-CCK), a CCK analogue, and the gastrin-based ligands (99m)Tc-N(4)-Gly-(D: )Glu-(Glu)(5)-Ala-Tyr-Gly-Trp-Met-Asp-Phe-NH(2) ((99m)Tc-demogastrin 2) and (111)In-DOTA-(D: )Glu-Ala-Tyr-Gly-Trp-Met-Asp-Phe-NH(2) ((111)In-DOTA-MG11) were each administered to the same group of six patients. Planar images made at 3-5, 7 and 24 h p.i. were used for comparison of tumour visualisation and renal uptake. RESULTS: (99m)Tc-demogastrin 2 scintigraphy visualised all known lesions and new lesions in four of six patients. (111)In-DOTA-CCK and (111)In-DOTA-MG11 on the other hand missed several lesions; tumour uptake of these two radiopharmaceuticals was quite low. Comparison of retention of renal activity showed no major differences between the three radiopeptides. CONCLUSION: (99m)Tc-demogastrin 2 scintigraphy appeared most promising as a diagnostic tool in patients with MTC. Further studies are required to evaluate its value in patient management. Direct comparisons of the compounds studied strongly suggests that (111)In-DOTA-CCK and (111)In-DOTA-MG11 have less potential as imaging agents than (99m)Tc-demogastrin 2. These DOTA-linked compounds are considered unlikely to be useful for radionuclide therapy because of low tumour uptake.
Project description:RNA duplex stability depends strongly on ionic conditions, and inside cells RNAs are exposed to both monovalent and multivalent ions. Despite recent advances, we do not have general methods to quantitatively account for the effects of monovalent and multivalent ions on RNA stability, and the thermodynamic parameters for secondary structure prediction have only been derived at 1M [Na(+)]. Here, by mechanically unfolding and folding a 20 bp RNA hairpin using optical tweezers, we study the RNA thermodynamics and kinetics at different monovalent and mixed monovalent/Mg(2+) salt conditions. We measure the unfolding and folding rupture forces and apply Kramers theory to extract accurate information about the hairpin free energy landscape under tension at a wide range of ionic conditions. We obtain non-specific corrections for the free energy of formation of the RNA hairpin and measure how the distance of the transition state to the folded state changes with force and ionic strength. We experimentally validate the Tightly Bound Ion model and obtain values for the persistence length of ssRNA. Finally, we test the approximate rule by which the non-specific binding affinity of divalent cations at a given concentration is equivalent to that of monovalent cations taken at 100-fold concentration for small molecular constructs.