High-throughput screening of 700,000 small molecules has identified 235 inhibitors of the GroEL/GroES-mediated refolding cycle. Dose-response analysis of a subset of these hits revealed that 21 compounds are potent inhibitors of GroEL/GroES-mediated refolding (IC50 <10 ?M). The screening results presented herein represent the first steps in a broader aim of developing molecular probes to study chaperonin biochemistry and physiology.
The trans-translation pathway for protein tagging and ribosome release plays a critical role for viability and virulence in a wide range of pathogens but is not found in animals. To explore the use of trans-translation as a target for antibiotic development, a high-throughput screen and secondary screening assays were used to identify small molecule inhibitors of the pathway. Compounds that inhibited protein tagging and proteolysis of tagged proteins were recovered from the screen. One of the most active compounds, KKL-35, inhibited the trans-translation tagging reaction with an IC50 = 0.9 µM. KKL-35 and other compounds identified in the screen exhibited broad-spectrum antibiotic activity, validating trans-translation as a target for drug development. This unique target could play a key role in combating strains of pathogenic bacteria that are resistant to existing antibiotics.
The efficacy of most marketed antimalarial drugs has been compromised by evolution of parasite resistance, underscoring an urgent need to find new drugs with new mechanisms of action. We have taken a high-throughput approach toward identifying novel antimalarial chemical inhibitors of prioritized drug targets for Plasmodium falciparum, excluding targets which are inhibited by currently used drugs. A screen of commercially available libraries identified 5655 low molecular weight compounds that inhibit growth of P. falciparum cultures with EC(50) values below 1.25?M. These compounds were then tested in 384- or 1536-well biochemical assays for activity against nine Plasmodium enzymes: adenylosuccinate synthetase (AdSS), choline kinase (CK), deoxyuridine triphosphate nucleotidohydrolase (dUTPase), glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH), guanylate kinase (GK), N-myristoyltransferase (NMT), orotidine 5-monophosphate decarboxylase (OMPDC), farnesyl pyrophosphate synthase (FPPS) and S-adenosylhomocysteine hydrolase (SAHH). These enzymes were selected using TDRtargets.org, and are believed to have excellent potential as drug targets based on criteria such as their likely essentiality, druggability, and amenability to high-throughput biochemical screening. Six of these targets were inhibited by one or more of the antimalarial scaffolds and may have potential use in drug development, further target validation studies and exploration of P. falciparum biochemistry and biology.
Myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) is a genetic disorder characterized by muscle wasting, myotonia, cataracts, cardiac arrhythmia, hyperinsulinism and intellectual deficits, and is caused by expansion of a CTG repeat in the 3UTR of the Dystrophia Myotonica-Protein Kinase (DMPK) gene. The DMPK transcripts containing expanded CUG repeats accumulate in nuclear foci and ultimately cause mis-splicing of secondary genes through the dysregulation of RNA-binding proteins including Muscleblind 1 (MBNL1) and CUG binding protein 1 (CUGBP1). Correction of mis-splicing of genes such as the Skeletal muscle-specific chloride channel 1 (CLCN1), Cardiac troponin T (TNNT2), Insulin receptor (INSR) and Sarcoplasmic/endoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+)ATPase 1 (SERCA1) may alleviate some of the symptoms of DM1; hence identification of small molecule modulators is an important step towards a therapy for DM1 patients. Here we describe the generation of immortalized myoblast cell lines derived from healthy (DMPK CTG(5)) and DM1 patient (DMPK CTG(1000)) fibroblasts by constitutive overexpression of human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) and inducible overexpression of the Myoblast determination factor (MYOD). MBNL1-containing nuclear foci, mis-splicing events and defective myotube differentiation defects characteristic of DM1 were observed in these cells. A CLCN1 luciferase minigene construct (CLCN1-luc) was stably introduced to monitor intron 2 retention in the DM1 cellular context (a reported splicing defect in DM1). The assay was validated by performing a high-throughput screen (HTS) of ~13,000 low molecular weight compounds against the CLCN1-luc DM1 myoblast cell line, providing an ideal system for conducting HTS to better understand and treat DM1.
One therapeutic approach to Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) recently entering clinical trials aims to convert DMD phenotypes to that of a milder disease variant, Becker Muscular Dystrophy (BMD), by employing antisense oligonucleotides (AONs) targeting splice sites, to induce exon skipping and restore partial dystrophin function. In order to search for small molecule and genetic modulators of AON-dependent and independent exon skipping, we screened approximately 10,000 known small molecule drugs, >17,000 cDNA clones, and >2,000 kinase- targeted siRNAs against a 5.6 kb luciferase minigene construct, encompassing exon 71 to exon 73 of human dystrophin. As a result, we identified several enhancers of exon skipping, acting on both the reporter construct as well as endogenous dystrophin in mdx cells. Multiple mechanisms of action were identified, including histone deacetylase inhibition, tubulin modulation and pre-mRNA processing. Among others, the nucleolar protein NOL8 and staufen RNA binding protein homolog 2 (Stau2) were found to induce endogenous exon skipping in mdx cells in an AON-dependent fashion. An unexpected but recurrent theme observed in our screening efforts was the apparent link between the inhibition of cell cycle progression and the induction of exon skipping.
Ectopic expression of defined transcription factors can reprogram somatic cells to induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, but the utility of iPS cells is hampered by the use of viral delivery systems. Small molecules offer an alternative to replace virally transduced transcription factors with chemical signaling cues responsible for reprogramming. In this report we describe a small-molecule screening platform applied to identify compounds that functionally replace the reprogramming factor Klf4. A series of small-molecule scaffolds were identified that activate Nanog expression in mouse fibroblasts transduced with a subset of reprogramming factors lacking Klf4. Application of one such molecule, kenpaullone, in lieu of Klf4 gave rise to iPS cells that are indistinguishable from murine embryonic stem cells. This experimental platform can be used to screen large chemical libraries in search of novel compounds to replace the reprogramming factors that induce pluripotency. Ultimately, such compounds may provide mechanistic insight into the reprogramming process.
Retinol-binding protein-4 (RBP4) is an emerging candidate drug target for type 2 diabetes and lipofuscin-mediated macular degeneration. The retinoic acid derivative fenretinide (N-(4-hydroxyphenyl) retinamide; HPR) exerts therapeutic effects in mouse models of obesity, diabetes, and Stargardts disease by targeting RBP4. Fenretinide competes with retinoids for RBP4 binding, disrupts RBP4-transthyretin (TTR) complexes, and results in urinary secretion of RBP4 and systemic depletion of retinol. To enable the search for nonretinoid molecules with fenretinide-like activities we developed a HTS-compatible homogeneous TR-FRET assay monitoring the displacement of retinoic acid derivatives from RBP4 in high-density 384-well and 1536-well microtiter plate formats. The retinoid displacement assay proved to be highly sensitive and robust after miniaturization with IC(50)s for fenretinide and retinol ranging around 50 and 100 nM, respectively, and Z-factors around 0.7. In addition, a surface plasmon resonance (SPR)-based secondary assay was developed to interrogate small molecule RBP4 binders for their ability to modulate the RBP4-TTR interaction. Finally, a 1.6 x 10(6) compound library was screened against the retinoid displacement assay. Several potent retinoid competitors were identified that also appeared to disrupt RBP4-TTR complexes. Some of these compounds could potentially serve as valuable tools to further probe RBP4 biology in the future.
Neural precursor cell expressed, developmentally down-regulated gene 8 (NEDD8) is a recently discovered ubiquitin-like posttranslational modifier. NEDD8 acts predominantly as a regulator of ubiquitin-protein ligases and as a decoy for proteins targeted for proteasomal degradation. It thereby controls key events in cell cycle progression and embryogenesis. Deneddylase-1 (DEN1/NEDP1/SENP8) features a selective peptidase activity converting the proNEDD8 precursor to its mature form and an isopeptidase activity deconjugating NEDD8 from substrates such as cullins and p53. In this study, we describe a high-throughput screening (HTS)-compatible time-resolved fluorescent resonance energy transfer (TR-FRET) assay measuring the peptidase activity of DEN1.
Conformational change is a common molecular mechanism for the regulation of kinase activities. Small molecule modulators of protein conformations, including allosteric kinase inhibitors, are highly wanted as tools for the interrogation of kinase biology and as selective therapeutic agents. However, straightforward cellular assays monitoring kinase conformations in a manner conducive to high-throughput screening (HTS) are not readily available. Here we describe such an HTS-compatible conformational sensor assay for Abl based on a split luciferase construct. The Abl sensor responds to intramolecular structural rearrangements associated with intracellular Abl deactivation and small molecule inhibition. The intact regulatory CAP-SH3-SH2 domain is required for the full functionality of the sensor. Moreover, a T334I Abl mutant (T315I in Abl1a) was found to be particularly well suited for HTS purposes and mechanistic intracellular studies of T334I mutant inhibitors. We expect that the split luciferase-based conformational sensor approach might be more broadly useful to probe the intracellular activation of other kinases and enzymes in general.
Related JoVE Video
Journal of Visualized Experiments
What is Visualize?
JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.
How does it work?
We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.
Video X seems to be unrelated to Abstract Y...
In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.