Quantitative structure-activity relationships for a series of inhibitors of cruzain from Trypanosoma cruzi: molecular modeling, CoMFA and CoMSIA studies.J Mol Graph Model. 2009 Aug; 28(1):3-11.JM
Human parasitic diseases are the foremost threat to human health and welfare around the world. Trypanosomiasis is a very serious infectious disease against which the currently available drugs are limited and not effective. Therefore, there is an urgent need for new chemotherapeutic agents. One attractive drug target is the major cysteine protease from Trypanosoma cruzi, cruzain. In the present work, comparative molecular field analysis (CoMFA) and comparative molecular similarity indices analysis (CoMSIA) studies were conducted on a series of thiosemicarbazone and semicarbazone derivatives as inhibitors of cruzain. Molecular modeling studies were performed in order to identify the preferred binding mode of the inhibitors into the enzyme active site, and to generate structural alignments for the three-dimensional quantitative structure-activity relationship (3D QSAR) investigations. Statistically significant models were obtained (CoMFA, r2=0.96 and q2=0.78; CoMSIA, r2=0.91 and q2=0.73), indicating their predictive ability for untested compounds. The models were externally validated employing a test set, and the predicted values were in good agreement with the experimental results. The final QSAR models and the information gathered from the 3D CoMFA and CoMSIA contour maps provided important insights into the chemical and structural basis involved in the molecular recognition process of this family of cruzain inhibitors, and should be useful for the design of new structurally related analogs with improved potency.