Covalent fragment-based ligand screening approaches for identification of novel ubiquitin proteasome system modulators.
Rothweiler EM., Brennan PE., Huber KVM.
Ubiquitination is a key regulatory mechanism vital for maintenance of cellular homeostasis. Protein degradation is induced by E3 ligases via attachment of ubiquitin chains to substrates. Pharmacological exploitation of this phenomenon via targeted protein degradation (TPD) can be achieved with molecular glues or bifunctional molecules facilitating the formation of ternary complexes between an E3 ligase and a given protein of interest (POI), resulting in ubiquitination of the substrate and subsequent proteolysis by the proteasome. Recently, the development of novel covalent fragment screening approaches has enabled the identification of first-in-class ligands for E3 ligases and deubiquitinases revealing so far unexplored binding sites which highlights the potential of these methods to uncover and expand druggable space for new target classes.