DNA threading agents: Effect of sidechain bulk on DNA binding and cytotoxicity of 9-anilinoacridine-4-carboxamides

Mark Searcey, P. Noel Martin, Nicola M. Howarth, Bernie Madden, Laurence P. G. Wakelin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


A series of 9-anilinoacridine-4-carboxamides with cycloalkyl sidechains has been synthesised to study the effect of sidechain bulk on the DNA binding properties and biological activity of these potential threading intercalators. With sidechains larger than cyclohexane the pKa of the acridine is exceptionally low, so that DNA binding is restricted to pHs below 5. The compounds are cytotoxic to human colon carcinoma cells in the μM range irrespective of their ability to bind to DNA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1831-1836
Number of pages6
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 6 Aug 1996
Externally publishedYes

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