Conformationally restrained carbazolone-containing α,γ-diketo acids as inhibitors of HIV integrase

Xingnan Li, Robert Vince

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Since α,γ-diketo acid (DKA) compounds were identified as potent and selective inhibitors for HIV integrase, numerous structural modification studies have been carried out to search for a clinical candidate as a supplement for the highly active antiretroviral therapy regimen. Due to the lack of structural information on inhibitor-integrase interactions, a comprehensive structure-activity relationship study is necessary. Most of the reported modification studies on the key α,γ-diketo acid pharmacophore focused on substituting the carboxylate moiety with its bioisosteres or other electron-pair bearing heterocycles. We were interested in studying the conformation and geometry of the central diketo moiety. A series of carbazolone-containing α,γ-diketo acids were designed and synthesized by applying conformational restraint onto the open-chain form of the diketo acid. These compounds showed anti-integrase activity in the low micromolar range, and integrase assay results indicated that the geometry of the diketo acid moiety is crucial to potency. Carbazol-1-one containing DKA analogs (7-8) showed a 2- to 3-fold increase in activity compared with those of carbazol-4-one containing DKA analogs (5 and 6). Alkylation of carbazol-4-one DKA nitrogen (6a-c) led to a loss of activity, suggesting this nitrogen atom may directly interact with the active site of integrase. The halogens (7b-d) and para-fluorobenzyl substituents (8a-d) on carbazol-1-one ring had little effect on potency.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2942-2955
Number of pages14
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry
Issue number9
StatePublished - May 1 2006


  • Carbazolone
  • Conformationally restrained
  • HIV integrase inhibitor
  • α,γ-Diketo acids


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