Discovery of A-1331852, a First-in-Class, Potent, and Orally-Bioavailable BCL-XL Inhibitor

ACS Med Chem Lett. 2020 Mar 30;11(10):1829-1836. doi: 10.1021/acsmedchemlett.9b00568. eCollection 2020 Oct 8.


Herein we describe the discovery of A-1331852, a first-in-class orally active BCL-XL inhibitor that selectively and potently induces apoptosis in BCL-XL-dependent tumor cells. This molecule was generated by re-engineering our previously reported BCL-XL inhibitor A-1155463 using structure-based drug design. Key design elements included rigidification of the A-1155463 pharmacophore and introduction of sp3-rich moieties capable of generating highly productive interactions within the key P4 pocket of BCL-XL. A-1331852 has since been used as a critical tool molecule for further exploring BCL-2 family protein biology, while also representing an attractive entry into a drug discovery program.