Synthesis, kinetic studies and molecular modeling of novel tacrine dimers as cholinesterase inhibitors†
This study presents the synthesis of 15 new tacrine dimers as well as the Ki and IC50 results, studies of the kinetic mechanism, and molecular docking analysis of the dimers in relation to the cholinesterases hAChE, hBChE, EeAChE and eqBChE. In addition to spectroscopic characterization, X-ray structure determination was performed for two of the new compounds. These new dimers were found to be mixed nanomolar inhibitors of the evaluated targets with a broad and significant selectivity profile, and these properties are dependent on both the type of the linker and the volume of the hydroacridine alicyclic ring. The results indicate that the aromatic linkers play a significant role in generating specific interactions with the half-gorge region of the catalytic center. Thus, these types of linkers can positively modulate the electronic properties of the tacrine dimers studied with an improvement of their cholinesterase inhibition activity.