Systematically modified octyl galactosides and octylN-acetyllactosamines were assessed as inhibitors of, and substrates for, T. cruzi trans-sialidase (TcTS) in the context of exploring its acceptor substrate binding site. These studies show that TcTS, which catalyses the α-(2→3)-sialylation of non-reducing terminal β-galactose residues, is largely intolerant of substitution of the galactose 2 and 4 positions whereas substitution of the galactose 6 position is well tolerated. Further studies show that even the addition of a bulky sugar residue (glucose, galactose) does not impact negatively on TcTS binding and turnover, which highlights the potential of ‘internal’ 6-substituted galactose residues to serve as TcTS acceptor substrates. Results from screening a 93-membered thiogalactoside library highlight a number of structural features (notably imidazoles and indoles) that are worthy of further investigation in the context of TcTS inhibitor development.
This article is Open Access
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