We have developed a modular scaffold for preparing high-affinity, homo-multivalent inhibitors of the prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) for imaging and therapy of prostate cancer (PCa). Our system contains a lysine-based (α-, ε-) dialkyne residue for incorporating a PSMA binding Lys-Glu urea motif exploiting click chemistry and a second lysine residue for subsequent modification with an imaging or therapeutic moiety. The utility of the multivalent scaffold was examined by synthesizing bivalent compounds 2 and 3 and comparing them with the monovalent analog 1. Determination of inhibition constants (Ki) revealed that bivalent 2 (0.2 nM) and 3 (0.08 nM) are significantly more potent (~ 5 fold and ~ 11 fold, respectively) inhibitors of PSMA than monovalent 1 (0.9 nM). A single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)-CT imaging study of [111In]3 demonstrated high and specific uptake in PSMA+ PC-3 PIP tumor until at least 48 h post-injection, with rapid clearance from non-target tissues, including kidney. A biodistribution study revealed that [111In]3 demonstrated 34.0 ± 7.5 percent injected dose per gram of tissue in PSMA+ tumor at 24 h post-injection and was capable of generating target-to-non-target ratios of ~ 379 in PSMA+ PC-3 PIP tumors vs. isogenic PSMA-negative PC3-flu tumors in vivo. The click chemistry approach affords a convenient strategy toward multivalent PSMA inhibitors of enhanced affinity and superior pharmacokinetics for imaging.
- Bivalent urea inhibitor
- Molecular imaging
- Prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA)
- SPECT imaging
ASJC Scopus subject areas