Structural insights into novel 15-prostaglandin dehydrogenase inhibitors

Prema L. Mallipeddi, Yongyou Zhang, Hongyun Li, Sanford D. Markowitz, Bruce Posner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


We discovered SW033291 in a high throughput chemical screen aimed at identifying 15-prostaglandin dehydrogenase (15-PGDH) modulators. The compound exhibited inhibitory activity in in vitro biochemical and cell-based assays of 15-PGDH activity. We subsequently demonstrated that this compound, and several analogs thereof, are effective in in vivo mouse models of bone marrow transplant, colitis, and liver regeneration, where increased levels of PGE2 positively potentiate tissue regeneration. To better understand the binding of SW033291, we carried out docking studies for both the substrate, PGE2, and an inhibitor, SW033291, to 15-PGDH. Our models suggest similarities in the ways that PGE2 and SW033291 interact with key residues in the 15-PGDH-NAD+ complex. We carried out molecular dynamics simulations (MD) of SW033291 bound to this complex, in order to understand the dynamics of the binding interactions for this compound. The butyl side chain (including the sulfoxide) of SW033291 participates in crucial binding interactions that are similar to those observed for the C15-OH and the C16-C20 alkyl chain of PGE2. In addition, interactions with residues Ser138, Tyr151, and Gln148 play key roles in orienting and stabilizing SW033291 in the binding site and lead to enantioselectivity for the R-enantiomer. Finally, we compare the binding mode of (R)-S(O)-SW033291 with the binding interactions of published 15-PGDH inhibitors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5903
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 1 2021


  • 15-PGDH
  • Inhibitor
  • Molecular docking
  • PGE2

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Chemistry (miscellaneous)
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


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