Highly potent triazole-based tubulin polymerization inhibitors

J Med Chem. 2007 Feb 22;50(4):749-54. doi: 10.1021/jm061142s. Epub 2007 Jan 24.


We describe the synthesis and biological evaluation of a series of tubulin polymerization inhibitors that contain the 1,2,4-triazole ring to retain the bioactive configuration afforded by the cis double bond in combretastatin A-4 (CA-4). Several of the subject compounds exhibited potent tubulin polymerization inhibitory activity as well as cytotoxicity against a variety of cancer cells including multi-drug-resistant (MDR) cancer cell lines. Attachment of the N-methyl-5-indolyl moiety to the 1,2,4-triazole core, as exemplified by compound 7, conferred optimal properties among this series. Computer docking and molecular simulations of 7 inside the colchicine binding site of tubulin enabled identification of residues most likely to interact strongly with these inhibitors and explain their potent anti-tubulin activity and cytotoxicity. It is hoped that results presented here will stimulate further examination of these substituted 1,2,4-triazoles as potential anti-cancer therapeutic agents.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Biopolymers
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm
  • Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor
  • Humans
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Conformation
  • Stereoisomerism
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Thiazoles / chemical synthesis*
  • Thiazoles / chemistry
  • Thiazoles / pharmacology
  • Tubulin / chemistry
  • Tubulin Modulators / chemical synthesis*
  • Tubulin Modulators / chemistry
  • Tubulin Modulators / pharmacology


  • Biopolymers
  • Thiazoles
  • Tubulin
  • Tubulin Modulators