The compulsive nature of tobacco use is attributable to nicotine addiction. Nicotine is eliminated by metabolism through the cytochrome P450 2A6 (CYP2A6) enzyme in liver. Inhibition of CYP2A6 by chemical compounds may represent a potential supplement to anti-smoking therapy. The purpose of this study was to rationally design potent inhibitors of CYP2A6. 3D-QSAR models were constructed to find out which structural characteristics are important for inhibition potency. Specifically located hydrophobic and hydrogen donor features were found to affect inhibition potency. These features were used in virtual screening of over 60 000 compounds in the Maybridge chemical database. A total of 22 candidate molecules were selected and tested for inhibition potency. Four of these were potent and selective CYP2A6 inhibitors with IC50 values lower than 1 μM. They represent novel structures of CYP2A6 inhibitors, especially N1-(4-fluorophenyl)cyclopropane-1-carboxamide. This compound can be used as a lead in the design of CYP2A6 inhibitor drugs to combat nicotine addiction.
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Comparative Molecular Field Analysis
Comparative Molecular Similarity Indices Analysis
partial least squares
three-dimensional quantitative structure–activity relationship
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We thank Ms. Hannele Jaatinen for her excellent technical help and Dr Ewen MacDonald for his help in preparing the manuscript.
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Rahnasto, M., Wittekindt, C., Juvonen, R. et al. Identification of inhibitors of the nicotine metabolising CYP2A6 enzyme—an in silico approach. Pharmacogenomics J 8, 328–338 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.tpj.6500481
- cytochrome P450
- molecular modelling
- smoking reduction