Structure-Based Design and Synthesis of Novel Inhibitors Targeting HDAC8 from Schistosoma mansoni for the Treatment of Schistosomiasis

J Med Chem. 2016 Mar 24;59(6):2423-35. doi: 10.1021/acs.jmedchem.5b01478. Epub 2016 Mar 14.


Schistosomiasis is a major neglected parasitic disease that affects more than 265 million people worldwide and for which the control strategy consists of mass treatment with the only available drug, praziquantel. In this study, a series of new benzohydroxamates were prepared as potent inhibitors of Schistosoma mansoni histone deacetylase 8 (smHDAC8). Crystallographic analysis provided insights into the inhibition mode of smHDAC8 activity by these 3-amidobenzohydroxamates. The newly designed inhibitors were evaluated in screens for enzyme inhibitory activity against schistosome and human HDACs. Twenty-seven compounds were found to be active in the nanomolar range, and some of them showed selectivity toward smHDAC8 over the major human HDACs (1 and 6). The active benzohydroxamates were additionally screened for lethality against the schistosome larval stage using a fluorescence-based assay. Four of these showed significant dose-dependent killing of the schistosome larvae and markedly impaired egg laying of adult worm pairs maintained in culture.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Delivery Systems
  • Helminth Proteins / drug effects*
  • Histone Deacetylases / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Larva
  • Models, Molecular
  • Schistosoma mansoni / drug effects*
  • Schistosoma mansoni / genetics
  • Schistosomiasis mansoni / drug therapy
  • Schistosomicides / chemical synthesis*
  • Schistosomicides / pharmacology*
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Substrate Specificity
  • X-Ray Diffraction


  • Helminth Proteins
  • Schistosomicides
  • Histone Deacetylases