Pharmacophore Modeling, virtual and in vitro screening for acetylcholinesterase inhibitors and their effects on amyloid-β self- assembly.Curr Comput Aided Drug Des. 2013 Mar; 9(1):2-14.CC
One of the most promising methods of unveiling the pharmacology of marketed drugs is to screen them against new biological targets. In an attempt to find inhibitors for acetylcholinesterase (AChE), the Drug Bank Database and natural alkaloids with other known medicinal values were screened through a four-point pharmacophore built in this study. The development of the pharmacophore was based on a structurally diverse set of reported AChE inhibitors and was validated using a separate set of known inhibitors. The developed pharmacophore indicated that the presence of one H-acceptor motif, one H-donor motif, one positively charged group and one aromatic ring is needed for AChE inhibition. Selected hits were further investigated by molecular docking and in vitro testing. The assays revealed that the majority of these compounds showed reasonable inhibition, indicating that the developed pharmacophore can indeed reliably screen molecules for potential AChE inhibitors. It appears that several commercially available marketed drugs have further potential as AChE inhibitors. To extend our study the same compounds have been tested in the fibrillogenesis inhibition of amyloidβ (Aβ) peptide to explore the possibility of their dual-function therapeutic activity in Alzheimer's disease.