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3-Aminoazetidin-2-one derivatives as N-acylethanolamine acid amidase (NAAA) inhibitors suitable for systemic administration

  • Author(s): Fiasella, A
  • Nuzzi, A
  • Summa, M
  • Armirotti, A
  • Tarozzo, G
  • Tarzia, G
  • Mor, M
  • Bertozzi, F
  • Bandiera, T
  • Piomelli, D
  • et al.

N-Acylethanolamine acid amidase (NAAA) is a cysteine hydrolase that catalyzes the hydrolysis of endogenous lipid mediators such as palmitoylethanolamide (PEA). PEA has been shown to exert anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive effects in animals by engaging peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPAR-α). Thus, preventing PEA degradation by inhibiting NAAA may provide a novel approach for the treatment of pain and inflammatory states. Recently, 3-aminooxetan-2-one compounds were identified as a class of highly potent NAAA inhibitors. The utility of these compounds is limited, however, by their low chemical and plasma stabilities. In the present study, we synthesized and tested a series of N-(2-oxoazetidin-3-yl)amides as a novel class of NAAA inhibitors with good potency and improved physicochemical properties, suitable for systemic administration. Moreover, we elucidated the main structural features of 3-aminoazetidin-2-one derivatives that are critical for NAAA inhibition. Stability is the key: α-Amino-β-lactams were synthesized as amide derivatives, and the effect of the azetidin-2-one ring, the stereochemistry at the α-position, and the functionalization of the α-amino group were studied with regard to N-acylethanolamine acid amidase inhibitory potency and hydrolytic and plasma stability. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

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