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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Anticancer cyclometalated [Au(III)m(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)mL]n+ compounds: Synthesis and cytotoxic properties.

A series of cyclometalated gold(III) compounds [Au(m)(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)mL]n+ (m = 1-3; n = 0-3; HC(wedge)N(wedge)CH = 2,6-diphenylpyridine) was prepared by ligand substitution reaction of L with N-donor or phosphine ligands. The [Au(m)(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)mL]n+ compounds are stable in solution in the presence of glutathione. Crystal structures of the gold(III) compounds containing bridging bi- and tridentate phosphino ligands reveal the presence of weak intramolecular pi pi stacking between the [Au(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)]+ units. Results of MTT assays demonstrated that the [Au(m)(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)mL]n+ compounds containing nontoxic N-donor auxiliary ligands (2) exert anticancer potency comparable to that of cisplatin, with IC50 values ranging from 1.5 to 84 microM. The use of [Au(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)(1-methylimidazole)]+ (2 a) as a model compound revealed that the gold(III)-induced cytotoxicity occurs through an apoptotic cell-death pathway. The cell-free interaction of 2 a with double-stranded DNA was also examined. Absorption titration showed that 2 a binds to calf-thymus DNA (ctDNA) with a binding constant of 4.5 x 10(5) dm3 mol(-1) at 298 K. Evidence from gel-mobility-shift assays and viscosity measurements supports an intercalating binding mode for the 2 a-DNA interaction. Cell-cycle analysis revealed that 2 a causes S-phase cell arrest after incubation for 24 and 48 hours. The cytotoxicity of 3 b-g toward cancer cells (IC50 = 0.04-4.3 microM) correlates to that of the metal-free phosphine ligands (IC50 = 0.1-38.0 microM), with [Au2(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)2(mu-dppp)]2+ (3 d) and dppp (dppp = 1,2-bis(diphenylphosphino)propane) being the most cytotoxic gold(III) and metal-free compounds, respectively. Compound 3 d shows a cytotoxicity at least ten-fold higher than the other gold(III) analogues; in vitro cellular-uptake experiments reveal similar absorptions for all the gold(III) compounds into nasopharyngeal carcinoma cells (SUNE1) (1.18-3.81 ng/cell; c.f., 3 d = 2.04 ng/cell), suggesting the presence of non-gold-mediated cytotoxicity. Unlike 2 a, both gold(III) compounds [Au(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)(PPh3)]+ (3 a) (PPh3 = triphenylphosphine) and [Au2(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)2(mu-dppp)]2+ (3 d) interact only weakly with ctDNA and do not arrest the cell cycle.[1]


  1. Anticancer cyclometalated [Au(III)m(C(wedge)N(wedge)C)mL]n+ compounds: Synthesis and cytotoxic properties. Li, C.K., Sun, R.W., Kui, S.C., Zhu, N., Che, C.M. Chemistry (Weinheim an der Bergstrasse, Germany) (2006) [Pubmed]
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