Cytotoxic Activity of Synthetic Chiral Amino Acid Derivatives


J. Braz. Chem. Soc.




Cancer is a chronic degenerative disease considered one of the most important causes of death worldwide. In this context, a series of dual-protected amino acid derivatives was synthesized and evaluated as potential novel anticancer agents. The 40 derivatives were prepared in up to three reaction steps. The cytotoxic activities were screened in vitro against a panel of tumor and non-tumor cells using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. Among the synthesized derivatives, three of them showed promising activity against cancer cells with half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) ranging between 1.7-6.1 µM. The most promising derivative, bearing both a lipophilic N-alkyl diamine moiety and a protected amino acid scaffold showed a selectivity index of 3.4 towards tumor cells. The N-alkyl diamine moiety seems to play a crucial role in the enhancement of the anticancer activity. On the other hand, the incorporation of an amino acid scaffold resulted in increase in the selectivity towards cancer cell lines.

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