Chemical and Pharmaceutical Bulletin
Online ISSN : 1347-5223
Print ISSN : 0009-2363
ISSN-L : 0009-2363
Regular Articles
Antiproliferative Effect of N-Heterocyclo-Coumarin Derivatives against Multidrug-Resistant Cells
Koji Wada Masuo GotoKuo-Hsiung LeeHiroshi Yamashita
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2023 Volume 71 Issue 1 Pages 52-57


Chemotherapy refers principally to the use of small molecules to treat cancer, and natural product derivatives have been main sources of clinically using anticancer drugs. While the coumarin skeleton does not inhibit cell growth, its derivatives are often active, and numerous coumarins have been examined for antiproliferative activity against human cancer cell lines. In this study, 16 novel coumarin derivatives (1, 1a5a, 1b, 2b, 6b, 7b, 813) with attached N-heterocycles, including aminopyrrolidine, aminopiperidine, aminoazepane, and indoline, were prepared and ultimately esterified or amidated with alcohols or amines, respectively. All synthesized N-heterocycles containing coumarin derivatives with alcohols, amines, and carboxylic acids were assessed for antiproliferative activity against several human cancer cell lines, containing triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) as well as a P-glycoprotein (P-gp) overexpressing multidrug-resistant (MDR) KB subline KB-VIN. Five coumarin derivatives (3a5a, 12, 13) showed no effect (IC50 >40 µM) against all tested cell lines. In contrast, derivative 1a showed broad-spectrum activity against four cell lines, while 1b and 10 were nearly twice as selective for KB-VIN cells as the parent KB. The coumarin derivatives 1a, 1b, and 10 were optimal for antiproliferative activity in this study and could provide a new avenue for overcoming MDR tumors. Derivatives 1a, 1b, and 10 showed MDR cell-selective antiproliferative activity, indicating that N-heterocycle-coumarins exert previously unexplored bioactivity with selective action on MDR cancer cells.

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© 2023 The Pharmaceutical Society of Japan
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