• Efficient elimination of nonstoichiometric enzyme inhibitors from HTS hit lists.

Efficient elimination of nonstoichiometric enzyme inhibitors from HTS hit lists.

Journal of biomolecular screening (2009-05-28)
Michael Habig, Anke Blechschmidt, Sigmar Dressler, Barbara Hess, Viral Patel, Andreas Billich, Christian Ostermeier, David Beer, Martin Klumpp

High-throughput screening often identifies not only specific, stoichiometrically binding inhibitors but also undesired compounds that unspecifically interfere with the targeted activity by nonstoichiometrically binding, unfolding, and/or inactivating proteins. In this study, the effect of such unwanted inhibitors on several different enzyme targets was assessed based on screening results for over a million compounds. In particular, the shift in potency on variation of enzyme concentration was used as a means to identify nonstoichiometric inhibitors among the screening hits. These potency shifts depended on both compound structure and target enzyme. The approach was confirmed by statistical analysis of thousands of dose-response curves, which showed that the potency of competitive and therefore clearly stoichiometric inhibitors was not affected by increasing enzyme concentration. Light-scattering measurements of thermal protein unfolding further verified that compounds that stabilize protein structure by stoichiometric binding show the same potency irrespective of enzyme concentration. In summary, measuring inhibitor IC(50) values at different enzyme concentrations is a simple, cost-effective, and reliable method to identify and eliminate compounds that inhibit a specific target enzyme via nonstoichiometric mechanisms.