by Aishwarya Radhakrishnan on  July 7, 2017 at 10:05 PM Research News
Rhodanine-based Compounds Inhibit Tau Protein Aggregation
Access to next generation precision additives is offered by the design of tailored peptide-polymer conjugates as drug-specific formulation additives that can render problematic small organic drugs water-soluble and improve>
The method can be applied to a large spectrum of entities of fluorescent or non-fluorescent drugs. Herein we report the solubilization of two poorly water-soluble, potential anti-Alzheimer disease (AD) drugs based on the rhodanine core. The compounds showed inhibitory activity to prevent the aggregation of Tau proteins into paired helical filaments (PHFs) and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs), both of which are associated with AD pathogenesis.

Using a fluorescence microscopy-based screening procedure, peptide sequences with high drug binding capacity are identified from large peptide libraries. The synthesis of corresponding peptide-poly(ethylene glycol) (peptide-PEG) conjugates leads to precision formulation additives for the potential anti-AD drugs. Whereas the PEG-blocks of the conjugates provide water solubility and drug shielding, the drug specific hosting is dominated by the peptide-segments, binding the drug in a non-covalent manner and thus bypassing the requirements of additional drug approval procedures.

Application in several bioassays of inhibition of Tau protein aggregation indicated that the formulation additives do not reduce drug efficacy and activity. The drug formulations showed a reduction of the fibril formation of the tested Tau construct comparable to the drug alone dissolved in DMSO. Thus, drug release from the conjugates is feasible. The activities of the compound-complexes in in vitro experiments on Tau4RDΔK280-expressing N2a cells were significantly enhanced, resulting in improved cell viability and reduced apoptosis, which correlates with a lower ratio of insoluble to soluble Tau aggregates.

This is important as DMSO is currently believed to affect relevant protein functions and might influence cell studies.

Source: Eurekalert

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