Lipidomics-based assays coupled with computational approaches can identify novel phospholipase A2 inhibitors

Adv Biol Regul. 2020 May;76:100719. doi: 10.1016/j.jbior.2020.100719. Epub 2020 Mar 10.


Phospholipase A2 (PLA2) enzymes play a major role in many diseases including the inflammatory cascade and specific potent small molecule inhibitors could be useful in studying their physiological role as well as for the development of drugs. In order to discover novel small molecule inhibitor platforms for members of the PLA2 superfamily of enzymes, we have applied computational approaches to determine the binding mode of potent inhibitors specific for particular PLA2s to the screening of chemical libraries. This has including the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Cancer Institute (NCI) Diversity Set V and the ChemBridge commercial compound libraries. We have then subjected identified inhibitor structures to recently developed lipidomics based screening assays to determine the XI(50) and specificity of the identified compounds for specific PLA2s. Herein we review this approach and report the identity of initial hits for both the Group IVA cytosolic PLA2 and the Group VIA calcium-independent PLA2 that are worthy of further structural modification to develop novel platforms for inhibitor development.

Keywords: Dose-response inhibition; Enzymatic assays; Hit compounds; Phospholipase A(2); Virtual screening.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Binding Sites
  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified / analysis
  • High-Throughput Screening Assays*
  • Lipidomics / methods*
  • Lysophospholipids / analysis
  • Molecular Docking Simulation
  • Molecular Dynamics Simulation
  • Phospholipase A2 Inhibitors / chemistry*
  • Phospholipases A2 / chemistry*
  • Phospholipases A2 / classification
  • Protein Binding
  • Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs
  • Protein Structure, Secondary
  • Small Molecule Libraries / chemistry*
  • Substrate Specificity
  • User-Computer Interface


  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified
  • Lysophospholipids
  • Phospholipase A2 Inhibitors
  • Small Molecule Libraries
  • Phospholipases A2