Design, Synthesis, and Biological Activity of Novel Polycyclic Aza-Amide FKBP12 Ligands

Since the discovery that FK-506 promotes neurite outgrowth, considerable attention has been focused on the development of potent nonimmunosuppressive ligands for FK-506 binding proteins (FKBPs). Such neuroimmunophilin agents have been reported to show neuroregenerative activity in a variety of cell and animal models including neurite outgrowth, age-related cognitive decline, Parkinson's disease, peripheral nerve injury, optic nerve degeneration, and diabetic neuropathy. We have designed and synthesized a unique series of tetracyclic aza-amides that have been shown to be potent FKBP12 rotamase inhibitors. The structure−activity relationships established in this study have demonstrated diverse structural modifications that result in potent rotamase inhibitory activity.