Aryl azide-sulfonamide hybrids induce cellular apoptosis: synthesis and preliminary screening of their cytotoxicity in human HCT116 and A549 cancer cell lines

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© 2019, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature. Simple, small, drug-like molecules bearing aryl azide and aryl sulfonamide moieties were designed and synthesized. The cytotoxic activity of these compounds was measured on colon cancer HCT116, lung cancer A549, and normal fibroblast cells F180 cell lines. All the synthesized compounds showed a significant cytotoxic activity below 100 µM in both HCT116 and A549 cells. Compounds 10e and 10f exhibited the most potent activity with IC50 values of 2.20 and 6.27 µM on A549 and HCT116 cells, respectively. Also, compounds 10e and 10f showed significant tumor selectivity on HCT116 and A549 cell lines when compared with the reference cytotoxic agent staurosporine. This indicated the promising safety of these compounds on normal cells. In addition, flow cytometry studies showed that HCT116 cell lines treated with the most active compound 10f were arrested in the G2/M phase of the cell cycle. 10f boosted both early and late apoptosis at HCT116 cells. A hypothetical pharmacophore model was built using 14 reported potent carbonic anhydrase I inhibitors. The pharmacophoric study revealed that the tested sulfonamide derivatives 10e and 10f showed significant fitting on the pharmacophore query with reasonable RMSD values. Molecular docking study showed a chelation reaction with the key Zn atom, in addition to different hydrogen bonding, and van der Waals interactions with several important amino acids inside the CA Ι active site. [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

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