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Evaluation of Acetylcholinesterase and Prolyl Oligopeptidase Inhibition of Novel Amino acid-functionalized Stigmasterol and Ursolic Acid Derivatives

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Triterpenes and phytosterols are classes of natural compounds widespread in plants possessing a great number of pharmacological activities. In our continued search for new compounds from natural sources with pharmacological potential, we prepared a series of novel stigmasterol and ursolic acid (UA) derivatives by coupling with L-proline, L-cysteine and L-glutamic acid. Unlike stigmasterol, the eight derivatives obtained showed good inhibitory capacity against acetylcholinesterase (AChE) or prolyl oligopeptidase (POP). Among these derivatives, we highlight 3 and 5 with IC50 values of 99.0 ± 8.8 and 97.5 ± 5.0 μM against AChE, respectively, and derivative 8 with a POP IC50 value of 75.7 ± 6.3 μM. The ursolic acid derivative 19 was the most promising compound of its class, with IC50 against AChE of 98.3 ± 7.7 μM. These results demonstrate that simple structural modifications on triterpenes and phytosterols can enhance their performance as enzymatic inhibitors.
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Keywords: Sterols; acetylcholinesterase; prolyl oligopeptidase; stigmasterol derivatives; triterpenes; ursolic acid derivatives

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2019

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