The bacterial replisome is a target for the development of new antibiotics to combat drug resistant strains. The ?(2) sliding clamp is an essential component of the replicative machinery, providing a platform for recruitment and function of other replisomal components and ensuring polymerase processivity during DNA replication and repair. A single binding region of the clamp is utilized by its binding partners, which all contain conserved binding motifs. The C-terminal Leu and Phe residues of these motifs are integral to the binding interaction. We acquired three-dimensional structural information on the binding site in ?(2) by a study of the binding of modified peptides. Development of a three-dimensional pharmacophore based on the C-terminal dipeptide of the motif enabled identification of compounds that on further development inhibited ?-?(2) interaction at low micromolar concentrations. We report the crystal structure of the complex containing one of these inhibitors, a biphenyl oxime, bound to ?(2), as a starting point for further inhibitor design.
While current therapeutic antibodies bind to IL-12 and IL-23 and inhibit their binding to IL-12R?1, we describe a novel antibody, termed 6F6, that binds to IL-12 and IL-23 and inhibits the interaction of IL-12 and IL-23 with their cognate signalling receptors IL-12R?2 and IL23R. This antibody does not affect the natural inhibition of the IL-12/23 pathway by the antagonists monomeric IL-12p40 and IL-12p80, which suggests that a dual antagonist system is possible. We have mapped the epitope of 6F6 to domain 3 of the p40 chain common to IL-12 and IL-23 and demonstrate that an antibody bound to this epitope is sufficient to inhibit engagement of the signalling receptors. Antibodies with this unique mechanism of inhibition are potent inhibitors of IL-12 induced IFN-? production and IL-23 induced IL-17 production in vitro, and in an in vivo model of psoriasis, treatment with a humanized variant of this antibody, h6F6, reduced the inflammatory response, resulting in decreased epidermal hyperplasia. We believe that this new class of IL-12/23 neutralising antibodies has the potential to provide improved potency and efficacy as anti-inflammatory agents, particularly in diseases characterized by an overproduction of IL-12.
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