Development of novel liver X receptor modulators based on a 1,2,4-triazole scaffold

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Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters


Liver X Receptor (LXR) agonists have been reported as a potential treatment for atherosclerosis, Alzheimer's disease and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. We have designed and synthesized a series of potent compounds based on a 1,2,4-triazole scaffold as novel LXR modulators. In cell-based cotransfection assays these compounds generally functioned as LXR agonists and we observed compounds with selectivity towards LXRα (7-fold) and LXRβ (7-fold) in terms of potency. Assessment of the effects of selected compounds on LXR target gene expression in HepG2 cells revealed that compounds 6a-b and 8a-b behaved as inverse agonists on FASN expression even though they were agonists in the LXRα and LXRβ cotransfection assays. Interestingly, these compounds had no effect on the expression of SREBP-1c confirming a unique LXR modulator pharmacology. Molecular docking studies and evaluation of ADME properties in-silico show that active compounds possess favorable binding modes and ADME profiles. Thus, these compounds may be useful for in vivo characterization of LXR modulators with unique profiles and determination of their potential clinical utility.

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