Bisubstrate inhibitors of protein kinases: from principle to practical applications

ChemMedChem. 2010 Jan;5(1):23-34. doi: 10.1002/cmdc.200900252.


Bisubstrate inhibitors consist of two conjugated fragments, each targeted to a different binding site of a bisubstrate enzyme. The design of bisubstrate inhibitors presupposes the formation of the ternary complex in the course of the catalyzed reaction. The principle advantage of bisubstrate inhibitors is their ability to generate more interactions with the target enzyme that could result in improved affinity and selectivity of the conjugates, when compared with single-site inhibitors. Among phosphotransferases, the approach was first successfully used for adenylate kinase in 1973. Since then, several types of bisubstrate inhibitors have been developed for protein kinases, including conjugates of peptides with nucleotides, adenosine derivatives and potent ATP-competitive inhibitors. Earlier bisubstrate inhibitors had pharmacokinetic qualities that were unsuitable for cellular experiments and hence were mostly used for in vitro studies. The recently constructed conjugates of adenosine derivatives and D-arginine-rich peptides (ARCs) possess high kinase affinity, high biological and chemical stability and good cell plasma membrane penetrative properties that enable their application in the regulation of cellular protein phosphorylation balances in cell and tissue experiments.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Competitive Bidding
  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • Nucleosides / chemistry
  • Nucleotides / chemistry
  • Nucleotides / metabolism
  • Peptides / chemistry
  • Peptides / metabolism
  • Protein Conformation
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / chemistry
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Protein Kinases / chemistry*
  • Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Pyrimidines / chemistry
  • Substrate Specificity


  • 4-amino-6-hydrazino-7-beta-D-ribofuranosyl-7H-pyrrolo(2,3-d)-pyrimidine-5-carboxamide
  • Nucleosides
  • Nucleotides
  • Peptides
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors
  • Pyrimidines
  • Protein Kinases