A boronate prochelator built on a triazole framework for peroxide-triggered tridentate metal binding.
Iron chelating agents have the potential to minimize damage associated with oxidative stress in a range of diseases; however, this potential is countered by risks of indiscriminant metal binding or iron depletion in conditions not associated with systemic iron overload. Deferasirox is a chelator used clinically for iron overload, but also is cytotoxic to cells in culture. In order to test whether a prodrug version of deferasirox could minimize its cytotoxicity but retain its protective properties against iron-induced oxidative damage, we synthesized a prochelator that contains a self-immolative boronic ester masking group that is removed upon exposure to hydrogen peroxide to release the bis-hydroxyphenyltriazole ligand deferasirox. We present here the synthesis and characterization of this triazole-based, self-immolative prochelator: TIP (4-(5-(2-((4-boronobenzyl)oxy)phenyl)-3-(2-hydroxyphenyl)-1H-1,2,4-triazol-1-yl)benzoic acid). TIP does not coordinate to Fe(3+) and shows only weak affinity for Cu(2+) or Zn(2+), in stark contrast to deferasirox, which avidly binds all three metal ions. TIP converts efficiently in vitro upon reaction with hydrogen peroxide to deferasirox. In cell culture, TIP protects retinal pigment epithelial cells from death induced by hydrogen peroxide; however, TIP itself is more cytotoxic than deferasirox in unstressed cells. These results imply that the cytotoxicity of deferasirox may not derive exclusively from its iron withholding properties.
Kielar, F; Wang, Q; Boyle, PD; Franz, KJ
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