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• A four-point pharmacophoric model has been used to design Ataluren derivatives.
• Fluorine and carboxylic moieties of benchmark Ataluren are not crucial for activity.
• Compounds showed low cytotoxicity and promoted readthrough of UGA nonsense mutation.
• The most active compound was tested in cell lines from a cystic fibrosis patients.
Ataluren, also known as PTC124, is a 5-(fluorophenyl)-1,2,4-oxadiazolyl-benzoic acid suggested to suppress nonsense mutations by readthrough of premature stop codons in the mRNA. Potential interaction of PTC124 with mRNA has been recently studied by molecular dynamics simulations highlighting the importance of H-bonding and stacking π−π interactions. A series of non-acidic analogues of PTC124 were selected from a large database via a ligand-based virtual screening approach. Eight of them were synthesized and tested for their readthrough activity using the Fluc reporter harboring the UGA premature stop codon. The most active compound was further tested for suppression of the UGA nonsense mutation in the bronchial epithelial IB3.1 cell line carrying the W1282X mutation in the CFTR gene.
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Journal: European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry - Volume 122, 21 October 2016, Pages 429–435