Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of 2,4-Diamino-6-(arylaminomethyl)pyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidines as Inhibitors of Pneumocystis carinii and Toxoplasma gondii Dihydrofolate Reductase and as Antiopportunistic Infection and Antitumor Agents

Aleem Gangjee, Ona O. Adair, Sherry F. Queener

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A series of 2,4-diamino-6-(arylaminomethyl)pyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidines were synthesized and evaluated as inhibitors of Pneumocystis carinii (pc), Toxoplasma gondii (tg), and rat liver (rl) dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) and as inhibitors of the growth of tumor cell lines in culture. Compounds 4-15 were designed as part of a continuing effort to examine the effects of substitutions at the 5-position, in the two-atom bridge, and in the side chain phenyl ring on structure-activity/selectivity relationships of 2,4-diaminopyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidines against a variety of DHFRs. Reductive amination of the common intermediate 2,4-diaminopyrido[2,3-d]pyrimidine-6-carbonitrile 16 with the appropriate anilines afforded the target compounds 4-12. Nucleophilic substitution or reductive methylation afforded the N10-methyl target compounds 13-15. As predicted, compounds 4-15 were, in general, less potent against all three DHFRs compared to the corresponding 2,4-diamino-5-methyl analogues previously reported; however, the greater decrease in potency against rlDHFR compared to pcDHFR and tgDHFR resulted in appreciable selectivity toward pathogenic DHFRs from different pathogens. The 2′,5′-dichloro analogue 8 showed selectivity ratios (IC50 against rlDHFR/IC50 against pcDHFR or tgDHFR) of 15.7 and 23 for pcDHFR and tgDHFR, respectively. Thus, the selectivity of 8 for pcDHFR is higher than the first line clinical agent trimethoprim (TMP). In a P. carinii cell culture study, analogue 8 exhibited 88% cell growth inhibition at a concentration of 10 μM and afforded marginal effects in an in vivo study in the T. gondii mouse model. Selected compounds were evaluated in the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in vitro preclinical antitumor screening program and inhibited the growth of tumor cells in culture at micromolar to submicromolar concentrations and were selected for evaluation in a NCI in vivo hollow fiber assay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5074-5082
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Medicinal Chemistry
Issue number23
StatePublished - Nov 6 2003


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Drug Discovery

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