Novel and potent small molecules against melanoma harboring braf class i/ii/iii mutants for overcoming drug resistance

Namkyoung Kim, Injae Shin, Jiwon Lee, Eunhye Jeon, Younghoon Kim, Seongshick Ryu, Eunhye Ju, Wonjeong Cho, Taebo Sim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Melanoma accounts for the majority of skin cancer deaths. About 50% of all melanomas are associated with BRAF mutations. BRAF mutations are classified into three classes with regard to dependency on RAF dimerization and RAS signaling. The most frequently occurring class I BRAF V600 mutations are sensitive to vemurafenib whereas class II and class III mutants, non-V600 BRAF mutants are resistant to vemurafenib. Herein we report six pyrimido[4,5-d]pyrimidin-2-one derivatives possessing highly potent anti-proliferative activities on melanoma cells harboring BRAF class I/II/III mutants. Novel and most potent derivative, SIJ1777, possesses not only two-digit nanomolar potency but also 2 to 14-fold enhanced anti-proliferative activities compared with refer-ence compound, GNF-7 against melanoma cells (SK-MEL-2, SK-MEL-28, A375, WM3670, WM3629). Moreover, SIJ1777 substantially inhibits the activation of MEK, ERK, and AKT and remarkably induces apoptosis and significantly blocks migration, invasion, and anchorage-independent growth of melanoma cells harboring BRAF class I/II/II mutations while both vemurafenib and PLX8394 have little to no effects on melanoma cells expressing BRAF class II/III mutations. Taken together, our six GNF-7 derivatives exhibit highly potent activities against melanoma cells harboring class I/II/III BRAF mutations compared with vemurafenib as well as PLX8394.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3783
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Apr 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments: This work was supported by the KU-KIST Graduate School of Converging Science and Technology Program.

Funding Information:
Funding: This research was supported by the Candidate Development Program (NRF2016M3A9B5940991) and Basic Science Research Program (2021R1A2C3011992) from the National Research Foundation in Korea.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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