Identification of a novel class of small compounds with anti-tuberculosis activity by in silico structure-based drug screening.
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The enzymes responsible for biotin biosynthesis in mycobacteria have been considered as potential drug targets owing to the important role in infection and cell survival that the biotin synthetic pathway plays in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Among the enzymes that comprise mycobacterium biotin biosynthesis systems, 7,8-diaminopelargonic acid synthase (DAPAS) plays an essential role during the stationary phase in bacterial growth. In this study, compounds that inhibit mycobacterial DAPAS were screened in the virtual chemical library using an in silico structure-based drug screening (SBDS) technique, and the antimycobacterial activity of the selected compounds was validated experimentally. The DOCK-GOLD programs utilized by in silico SBDS facilitated the identification of a compound, referred to as KMD6, with potent inhibitory effects on the growth of model mycobacteria (M. smegmatis). The subsequent compound search, which was based on the structural features of KMD6, resulted in identification of three additional active compounds, designated as KMDs3, KMDs9 and KMDs10. The inhibitory effect of these compounds was comparable to that of isoniazid, which is a first-line antituberculosis drug. The high antimycobacterial activity of KMD6, KMDs9 and KMDs10 was maintained on the experiment with M. tuberculosis. Of the active compounds identified, KMDs9 would be a promising pharmacophore, owing to its long-term antimycobacterial effect and lack of cytotoxicity.