The bleomycin (BLM) group antitumor antibiotics are glycopeptide-derived natural products shown to cause sequence selective lesions in DNA. Prior studies have indicated that the linker region, composed of the methylvalerate and threonine residues, may be responsible for a conformational bend in the agent required for efficient DNA cleavage. We have synthesized a number of conformationally constrained methylvalerate analogues and incorporated them into deglycobleomycin A5 congeners using our recently reported procedure for the solid phase construction of (deglyco)bleomycin and its analogues. These analogues were designed to probe the effects of conformational constraint of the native valerate moiety. Initial experiments indicated that the constrained molecules, none of which mimic the conformation proposed for the natural valerate linker, possessed DNA cleavage activity, albeit with potencies less than that of (deglyco)BLM and lacking sequence selectivity. Further experiments demonstrated that these analogues failed to produce alkali-labile lesions in DNA or sequence selective oxidative damage in RNA. However, two of the conformationally constrained deglycoBLM analogues were shown to mediate RNA cleavage in the absence of added Fe2+. The ability of the analogues to mediate the oxygenation of small molecules was also assayed, and it was shown that they were as competent in the transfer of oxygen to low molecular weight substrates as the parent compound.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry