Novel 2-arylthiopropanoyl-CoA inhibitors of α-methylacyl-CoA racemase 1A (AMACR; P504S) as potential anti-prostate cancer agents

Maksims Yevglevskis, Amit Nathubhai, Katty Wadda, Guat L Lee, Suzanne Al-Rawi, Tingying Jiao, Paul J Mitchell, Tony D James, Michael D Threadgill, Timothy J Woodman, Matthew D Lloyd*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticlepeer-review


α-Methylacyl-CoA racemase (AMACR; P504S) catalyses an essential step in the degradation of branched-chain fatty acids and the activation of ibuprofen and related drugs. AMACR has gained much attention as a drug target and biomarker, since it is found at elevated levels in prostate cancer and several other cancers. Herein, we report the synthesis of 2-(phenylthio)propanoyl-CoA derivatives which provided potent AMACR inhibitory activity (IC50 = 22-100 nM), as measured by the AMACR colorimetric activity assay. Inhibitor potency positively correlates with calculated logP, although 2-(3-benzyloxyphenylthio)propanoyl-CoA and 2-(4-(2-methylpropoxy)phenylthio)propanoyl-CoA were more potent than predicted by this parameter. Subsequently, carboxylic acid precursors were evaluated against androgen-dependent LnCaP prostate cancer cells and androgen-independent Du145 and PC3 prostate cancer cells using the MTS assay. All tested precursor acids showed inhibitory activity against LnCaP, Du145 and PC3 cells at 500 µM, but lacked activity at 100 µM. This is the first extensive structure-activity relationship study on the influence of side-chain interactions on the potency of novel rationally designed AMACR inhibitors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103263
Number of pages8
JournalBioorganic Chemistry
Early online date7 Sept 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Antineoplastic Agents/chemical synthesis
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Proliferation/drug effects
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor
  • Enzyme Inhibitors/chemical synthesis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Molecular Structure
  • Prostatic Neoplasms/drug therapy
  • Racemases and Epimerases/antagonists & inhibitors
  • Structure-Activity Relationship


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