Allosteric kidney-type glutaminase (GLS) inhibitors with a mercaptoethyl linker

Bridget Duvall, Sarah C. Zimmermann, Run Duo Gao, Ajit G. Thomas, Filip Kalčic, Vijayabhaskar Veeravalli, Amira Elgogary, Rana Rais, Camilo Rojas, Anne Le, Barbara S. Slusher, Takashi Tsukamoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A series of allosteric kidney-type glutaminase (GLS) inhibitors possessing a mercaptoethyl ([sbnd]SCH2CH2[sbnd]) linker were synthesized in an effort to further expand the structural diversity of chemotypes derived from bis-2-(5-phenylacetamido-1,3,4-thiadiazol-2-yl)ethyl sulfide (BPTES), a prototype allosteric inhibitor of GLS. BPTES analog 3a with a mercaptoethyl linker between the two thiadiazole rings was found to potently inhibit GLS with an IC50 value of 50 nM. Interestingly, the corresponding derivative with an n-propyl ([sbnd]CH2CH2CH2[sbnd]) linker showed substantially lower inhibitory potency (IC50 = 2.3 μM) while the derivative with a dimethylsulfide ([sbnd]CH2SCH2[sbnd]) linker showed no inhibitory activity at concentrations up to 100 μM, underscoring the critical role played by the mercaptoethyl linker in the high affinity binding to the allosteric site of GLS. Additional mercaptoethyl-linked compounds were synthesized and tested as GLS inhibitors to further explore SAR within this scaffold including derivatives possessing a pyridazine as a replacement for one of the two thiadiazole moiety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number115698
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry
Issue number20
StatePublished - Oct 15 2020


  • Allosteric inhibitor
  • CB-839
  • GLS
  • Glutaminase
  • Thioethyl linker

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


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