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Journal of virology

Evaluation of novel acyclic nucleoside phosphonates against human and animal gammaherpesviruses revealed an altered metabolism of cyclic prodrugs upon Epstein-Barr virus reactivation in P3HR-1 cells.


PMID 24027315

Abstract

Acyclic nucleoside phosphonates (ANPs), such as (S)-1-[(3-hydroxy-2-phosphonomethoxy)propyl)]cytosine (HPMPC), are an important group of broad-spectrum antiviral agents with activity against DNA viruses. In this report, we present the in vitro potencies of novel ANPs against gammaherpesviruses, including Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus, Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), and three animal gammaherpesviruses. 1-(S)-[3-hydroxy-2-(phosphonomethoxy)propyl]-5-azacytosine (HPMP-5-azaC), (S)-9-[3-hydroxy-2-(phosphonomethoxy)propyl]-3-deazaadenine (3-deaza-HPMPA), and their cyclic derivatives have emerged as highly potent antigammaherpesvirus agents. Interestingly, cyclic prodrugs of ANPs exhibited reduced activities against EBV strain P3HR-1, but not against EBV strain Akata. Cell culture metabolism studies with HPMPC and cyclic HPMPC revealed that these differences were attributable to an altered drug metabolism in P3HR-1 cells after EBV reactivation and, more specifically, to a reduced hydrolysis of cyclic HPMPC by cyclic CMP phosphodiesterase. We did not correlate this effect with phosphodiesterase downregulation, or to functional mutations. Instead, altered cyclic AMP levels in P3HR-1 cells indicated a competitive inhibition of the phosphodiesterase by this cyclic nucleotide. Finally, both HPMPC and HPMP-5-azaC emerged as highly effective inhibitors in vivo through significant inhibition of murine gammaherpesvirus replication and dissemination. With the current need for potent antigammaherpesvirus agents, our findings underline the requirement of appropriate surrogate viruses for antiviral susceptibility testing and highlight HPMP-5-azaC as a promising compound for future clinical development.

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