Redox and non-redox mechanism of in vitro cyclooxygenase inhibition by natural quinones

Landa P., Kutil Z., Temml V., Vuorinen A., Malík J., Dvořákova M., Maršík P., Kokoška L., Přibylová M., Schuster D., Vaněk T.
PLANTA MEDICA 78: 326-333, 2012

Keywords: inflammation, prostaglandin synthase, structure‑activity relationship, cytotoxicity, free radicals, pharmacophore modeling
Abstract: In this study, ten anthra-, nine naphtho-, and five benzoquinone compounds of natural origin and five synthetic naphthoquinones were assessed, using an enzymatic in vitro assay, for their potential to inhibit cyclooxygenase-1 and -2 (COX-1 and COX-2), the key enzymes of the arachidonic acid cascade. IC50 values comparable with COX reference inhibitor indomethacin were recorded for several quinones (primin, alkannin, diospyrin, juglone, 7 methyljuglone, and shikonin). For some of the compounds,we suggest the redox potential of quinones as the mechanism responsible for in vitro COX inhibition because of the quantitative correlation with their pro-oxidant effect. Structure-relationship activity studies revealed that the substitutions at positions 2 and 5 play the key roles in the COX inhibitory and pro-oxidant actions of naphthoquinones. In contrast, the redox mechanism alone could not explain the activity of primin, embelin, alkannin, and diospyrin. For these four quinones, molecular modeling suggested similar binding modes as for conventional nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
IEB authors: Marcela Dvořáková, Přemysl Landa, Petr Maršík, Marie Kvasnicová, Tomáš Vaněk