Part 1: Notch-sparing γ-secretase inhibitors: The identification of novel naphthyl and benzofuranyl amide analogs Academic Article uri icon


  • γ-Secretase is one of two proteases directly involved in the production of the amyloid β-peptide (Aβ), which is pathogenic in Alzheimer's disease. Inhibition of γ-secretase to suppress the production of Aβ should not block processing of one of its alternative substrates, Notch1 receptors, as interference with Notch1 signaling leads to severe toxic effects. In the course of our studies to identify γ-secretase inhibitors with selectivity for APP over Notch, 1 [3-(benzyl(isopropyl)amino)-1-(naphthalen-2-yl)propan-1-one] was found to inhibit γ-secretase-mediated Aβ production without interfering with γ-secretase-mediated Notch processing in purified enzyme assays. As 1 is chemically unstable, efforts to increase the stability of this compound led to the identification of 2 [naphthalene-2-carboxylic acid benzyl-isopropyl-amide] which showed similar biological activity to compound 1. Synthesis and evaluation of a series of amide analogs resulted in benzofuranyl amide analogs that showed promising Notch-sparing γ-secretase inhibitory effects. This class of compounds may serve as a novel lead series for further study in the development of γ-secretase inhibitors.

altmetric score

  • 7

author list (cited authors)

  • Lu, D., Wei, H., Zhang, J., Gu, Y., Osenkowski, P., Ye, W., ... Augelli-Szafran, C. E.

citation count

  • 2

publication date

  • March 2016