Evaluation of Ketoclomazone and its Analogues as Inhibitors of Thiamine Diphosphate (ThDP)-dependent Enzymes

17 January 2024, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


Most pathogenic bacteria, apicomplexan parasites and plants rely on the methylerythritol phosphate (MEP) pathway to obtain precursors of isoprenoids. 1-Deoxy-D-xylulose 5-phosphate synthase (DXPS), a thiamine diphosphate (ThDP)-dependent enzyme, catalyses the first and rate-limiting step of the MEP pathway. Due to its absence in humans, DXPS is considered as an attractive target for the development of anti-infectious agents and herbicides. However, major challenges in designing therapeutic agents that target DXPS include: a) discovering drug-like inhibitors to occupy a highly polar active site; and b) selectively targeting DXPS over other ThDP-dependent enzymes. Ketoclomazone is one of the earliest reported inhibitors of DXPS and antibacterial and herbicidal activities have been documented. This study aimed to investigate the activity of ketoclomazone on DXPS from various species, as well as the broader ThDP-dependent enzyme family. To gain further insights into the inhibition, we have prepared analogues of ketoclomazone and evaluated their activity in biochemical and computational studies. Our findings support the potential of ketoclomazone as a selective antibacterial agent.


Thiamine diphosphate
Enzyme inhibition

Supplementary materials

Material, methods & additional results
Anti-plasmodial Activity Assays – Methods and Results Enzyme Assays – Methods and Results Cytotoxicity Assays – Methods and Results Parallel Artificial Membrane Permeability Assay – Methods and Results Synthetic Experimental Procedures and NMR spectra Supplementary References


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