The Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) enoyl-acyl carrier protein reductase (mtInhA) is an attractive enzyme and a thoroughly studied target for tuberculosis therapy. In this study, to identify novel structure-activity relationships (SARs) of mtInhA inhibitors, a series of diphenyl ether derivatives were designed based on the matched molecular pair (MMP) method, and the binding energies of these compounds were subsequently estimated by in silico structure-based drug screening (SBDS) to provide more useful data. Consequently, the 10 unique candidate compounds (KEM1-KEM10) were identified and assessed for the inhibition of mtInhA enzymatic activity, in vitro antibiotic effects against model mycobacteria and toxicity level on both intestinal bacteria and mammalian cells. Among the compounds tested, phenyl group (KEM4) and 2-fluorobenzyl group (KEM7) substitutions produced preferable inhibitory effects on mtInhA enzymatic activity relative to those provided by a furyl group (KES4: base compound) at the terminal of the compound, and KEM7 inhibited the growth of the mycobacteria strain with a lower IC50 value. Moreover, most of the candidate compounds exhibited neither inhibition of the growth of enterobacteria nor toxic effects on mammalian cells, though KEM10 exhibited toxicity against cultured MDCK cells. The structural and experimental information concerning these mtInhA inhibitors identified through MMP-based in silico screening will likely contribute to the lead optimisation of novel antibiotics for M. tuberculosis.
- In Silico Drug Screening
- Enoyl-acyl Carrier Protein Reductase (inha)
- Matched Molecular Pair (mmp)
- Mycobacterium Tuberculosis