An assay recapitulating the 3' processing activity of HIV-1 integrase (IN) was used to screen the Boehringer Ingelheim compound collection. Hit-to-lead and lead optimization beginning with compound 1 established the importance of the C3 and C4 substituent to antiviral potency against viruses with different aa124/aa125 variants of IN. The importance of the C7 position on the serum shifted potency was established. Introduction of a quinoline substituent at the C4 position provided a balance of potency and metabolic stability. Combination of these findings ultimately led to the discovery of compound 26 (BI 224436), the first NCINI to advance into a phase Ia clinical trial.
Keywords: HIV Integrase; LTR DNA 3′-processing; NCINI; allosteric inhibitor.