Identification of Darmstoff analogs as selective agonists and antagonists of lysophosphatidic acid receptors

Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2006 Jan 15;16(2):451-6. doi: 10.1016/j.bmcl.2005.08.096. Epub 2005 Nov 14.


Darmstoff describes a family of gut smooth muscle-stimulating acetal phosphatidic acids initially isolated and characterized from the bath fluid of stimulated gut over 50 years ago. Despite similar structural and biological profiles, Darmstoff analogs have not previously been examined as potential LPA mimetics. Here, we report a facile method for the synthesis of potassium salts of Darmstoff analogs. To understand the effect of stereochemistry on lysophosphatidic acid mimetic activity, synthesis of optically pure stereoisomers of selected Darmstoff analogs was achieved starting with chiral methyl glycerates. Each Darmstoff analog was evaluated for subtype-specific LPA receptor agonist/antagonist activity, PPARgamma activation, and autotaxin inhibition. From this study we identified compound 12 as a pan-antagonist and several pan-agonists for the LPA(1-3) receptors. Introduction of an aromatic ring in the lipid chain such as analog 22 produced a subtype-specific LPA(3) agonist with an EC(50) of 692 nM. Interestingly, regardless of their LPA(1/2/3) ligand properties all of the Darmstoff analogs tested activated PPARgamma. However, these compounds are weak inhibitors of autotaxin. The results indicate that Darmstoff analogs constitute a novel class of lysophosphatidic acid mimetics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Ligands
  • Molecular Conformation
  • PPAR gamma / drug effects
  • Phosphatidic Acids / chemical synthesis
  • Phosphatidic Acids / chemistry
  • Phosphatidic Acids / pharmacology*
  • Receptors, Lysophosphatidic Acid / agonists*
  • Receptors, Lysophosphatidic Acid / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Stereoisomerism
  • Structure-Activity Relationship


  • Ligands
  • PPAR gamma
  • Phosphatidic Acids
  • Receptors, Lysophosphatidic Acid
  • darmstoff