Biochemical pharmacology

Inhibition of hepatitis B virus production by modified 2',3'-dideoxy-thymidine and 2',3'-dideoxy-5-methylcytidine derivatives. In vitro and in vivo studies.

PMID 1314607


The effect of analogues of both 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluorothymidine (FddThd) [2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluorouridine (FddUrd), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluoro-5-chlorouridine (FddClUrd), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'- fluoro-5-bromouridine (FddBrUrd) and 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluoro-5-bromovinyluridine (FddBVUrd)] and 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluorocytidine (FddCyt) [2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluoro-5-fluorocytidine (FddFCyt), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluoro-5-chlorocytidine (FddClCyt), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluoro-5-methylcytidine (FddMeCyt), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-fluoro-5-ethylcytidine (FddEtCyt), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-chloro-5-methylcytidine (ClddMeCyt), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-amino-5-methylcytidine (AmddMeCyt), 2',3'-dideoxy-3'-azido-5- methylcytidine (AzddMeCyt) and arabinosyl-5-methylcytosine (AraMeCyt)] were tested for their potential antiviral activity in vitro using the human hepatoblastoma cell line, Hep G2 2.2.15, which was transfected with a vector containing hepatitis B virus (HBV). It was found that FddThd, FddMeCyt, FddEtCyt, ClddMeCyt, AmddMeCyt and AraMeCyt display cytostatic activity at concentrations (CD50 values) between 0.54 (FddMeCyt) and 3.93 microM (FddEtCyt), while FddUrd, FddClUrd, FddBrUrd, FddBVUrd, FddCyt, FddFCyt, FddClCyt and AzddMeCyt do not affect cell growth at concentrations of up to 25 microM. Among the thymidine analogues tested, FddThd is the most effective antiviral agent: at a concentration of 0.03 microM a more than 90% reduction of HBV DNA synthesis was measured. On the other hand, the antiviral indexes displayed by FddClUrd, FddBrUrd and FddBVUrd are higher than tht of FddThd; FddUrd was completely inactive. The most powerful antiviral agents in the group of cytidine analogues tested in vitro were FddMeCyt (more than 90% reduction of HBVDNA synthesis at 0.10 microM) and ClddMeCyt (0.10 microM); FddClCyt, FddEtCyt, AmddMeCyt and AraMeCyt were of intermediate activity. None of the negligible antiviral activity was determined for FddUrd, FddCyt, FddFCyt and AzddMeCyt. FddThd and FddMeCyt displayed in vivo an antiviral effect in the duck/duck HBV (DHBV) animal system. Administration of 10 or 20 mg/kg (total daily dose) of FddThd and 5 or 10 mg/kg of FddMeCyt (i.m. daily) to ducks infected with DHBV for 12 days blocked virus production. Termination of treatment with FddThd of infected animals led to reappearance of the virus in the serum though at lower levels. The in vitro and the in vivo data suggest that FddThd and FddMeCyt might be promising antiviral agents for the treatment of infection caused by HBV in humans.