A new quinoline BRD4 inhibitor targets a distinct latent HIV-1 reservoir for reactivation from other "shock" drugs

Erik Abner, Mateusz Stoszko, Lei Zeng, Heng Chang Chen, Andrea Izquierdo-Bouldstridge, Tsuyoshi Konuma, Eduard Zorita, Elisa Fanunza, Qiang Zhang, Tokameh Mahmoudi, Ming Ming Zhou, Guillaume J. Filion, Albert Jordan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

Upon HIV-1 infection, a reservoir of latently infected resting T cells prevents the eradication of the virus from patients. To achieve complete depletion, the existing virus-suppressing antiretroviral therapy must be combined with drugs that reactivate the dormant viruses. We previously described a novel chemical scaffold compound, MMQO (8-methoxy-6-methylquinolin-4-ol), that is able to reactivate viral transcription in several models of HIV latency, including J-Lat cells, through an unknown mechanism. MMQO potentiates the activity of known latency-reversing agents (LRAs) or "shock" drugs, such as protein kinase C (PKC) agonists or histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors. Here, we demonstrate that MMQO activates HIV-1 independently of the Tat transactivator. Gene expression microarrays in Jurkat cells indicated that MMQO treatment results in robust immunosuppression, diminishes expression of c-Myc, and causes the dysregulation of acetylation-sensitive genes. These hallmarks indicated that MMQO mimics acetylated lysines of core histones and might function as a bromodomain and extraterminal domain protein family inhibitor (BETi). MMQO functionally mimics the effects of JQ1, a well-known BETi. We confirmed that MMQO interacts with the BET family protein BRD4. Utilizing MMQO and JQ1, we demonstrate how the inhibition of BRD4 targets a subset of latently integrated barcoded proviruses distinct from those targeted by HDAC inhibitors or PKC pathway agonists. Thus, the quinoline-based compound MMQO represents a new class of BET bromodomain inhibitors that, due to its minimalistic structure, holds promise for further optimization for increased affinity and specificity for distinct bromodomain family members and could potentially be of use against a variety of diseases, including HIV infection.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere002056-17
JournalJournal of Virology
Volume92
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2018

Keywords

  • BETi
  • Brd4
  • HIV latency
  • LRAs

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