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Discovery of selective diacylglycerol lipase β inhibitors

Diacylglycerol lipases (DAGLα and DAGLβ) are responsible for the biosynthesis of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) in the brain and peripheral tissues. Selective DAGLβ inhibitors have been proposed as a potential treatment for inflammatory diseases with reduced potential for central nervous system (CNS) mediated side effects, but they are currently lacking.

N. Zhu
22 mei 2024
Thesis in Leiden Repository

To develop DAGLβ selective inhibitors, a fluorescent biochemical assay was optimized and applied in a high-throughput screening (HTS) for DAGLβ. During the HTS, eight hits classified into four distinct chemotypes were identified. Subsequent structure-activity relationship (SAR) studies, focusing on hit 1 and its modifications, revealed a specific group as the modification hotspot crucial for achieving selectivity towards DAGLβ. Through an extensive SAR investigation, focusing on modifying this group, the first-in-class DAGLβ selective inhibitors, LEI-130 and LEI-131, were discovered. Following their discovery, LEI-130 and LEI-131 underwent comprehensive in vitro and in situ profiling studies. These investigations confirmed that LEI-130 and LEI-131 are selective and noncompetitive inhibitors of DAGLβ, effectively reducing inflammation.

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