Structure-based alignment and comparative molecular field analysis of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors

J Med Chem. 1996 Dec 20;39(26):5064-71. doi: 10.1021/jm950771r.


The method of comparative molecular field analysis (CoMFA) was used to develop quantitative structure-activity relationships for physostigmine, 9-amino-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroacridine (THA), edrophonium (EDR), and other structurally diverse inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase (AChE). The availability of the crystal structures of enzyme/inhibitor complexes (EDR/AChE, THA/AChE, and decamethonium (DCM)/AChE) (Harel, M.; et al. Quaternary ligand binding to aromatic residues in the active-site gorge of acetylcholinesterase. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 1993, 90, 9031-9035) provided information regarding not only the active conformation of the inhibitors but also the relative mutual orientation of the inhibitors in the active site of the enzyme. Crystallographic conformations of EDR and THA were used as templates onto which additional inhibitors were superimposed. The application of cross-validated R2 guided region selection method, recently developed in this laboratory (Cho, S.J.; Tropsha, A. Cross-Validated R2 Guided Region Selection for Comparative Molecular Field Analysis (CoMFA): A Simple Method to Achieve Consistent Results. J. Med. Chem. 1995, 38, 1060-1066), to 60 AChE inhibitors led to a highly predictive CoMFA model with the q2 of 0.734.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholinesterase / drug effects*
  • Binding Sites
  • Cholinesterase Inhibitors / chemistry*
  • Molecular Structure


  • Cholinesterase Inhibitors
  • Acetylcholinesterase