Nonsteroidal progesterone receptor (PR) full antagonists are needed as tools for elucidating the physiological functions of PR and as candidates for treatment of various diseases. We designed and synthesized 1,3-diphenyladamantane derivatives, and investigated their PR-antagonistic activity in comparison with our recently developed boron cluster-based PR antagonists. Among the synthesized adamantane derivatives, compound 9a exhibited the most potent PR-antagonistic activity (IC50: 25nM) and showed high binding affinity for the PR ligand-binding domain, comparable with that of the boron cluster-based PR antagonists. These results suggest that disubstituted adamantane, like the boron cluster m-carborane, is a promising hydrophobic pharmacophore for further structural development of nonsteroidal PR antagonists.
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