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Prion 2012 Nov-Dec;6(5):470-6
Prion diseases are fatal, neurodegenerative diseases characterized by the structural conversion of the normal, cellular prion protein, PrP (C) into an abnormally structured, aggregated and partially protease-resistant isoform, termed PrP (Sc) . Although substantial research has been directed toward development of therapeutics targeting prions, there is still no curative treatment for the disease. Benzoxazines are bicyclic heterocyclic compounds possessing several pharmaceutically important properties, including neuroprotection and reactive oxygen species scavenging. In an effort to identify novel inhibitors of prion formation, several 5,7,8-trimethyl-1,4-benzoxazine derivatives were evaluated in vitro for their effectiveness on the expression levels of normal PrP (C) and its conversion to the abnormal isoforms of PrP (Sc) in a scrapie-infected cell culture model. The most potent compound was 2-(4-methoxyphenyl)-5,7,8-trimethyl-3,4-dihydro-2H-1,4-benzoxazine, with a diminishing effect on the formation of PrP (Sc) , thus establishing a class of compounds with a promising therapeutic use against prion diseases.