TAK-733 is an orally bioavailable small-molecule inhibitor of MEK1 and MEK2 (MEK1/2) with potential antineoplastic activity. MEK inhibitor TAK-733 selectively binds to and inhibits the activity of MEK1/2, preventing the activation of MEK1/2-dependent effector proteins and transcription factors, which may result in the inhibition of growth factor-mediated cell signaling and tumor cell proliferation. MEK1/2 (MAP2K1/K2) are dual-specificity threonine/tyrosine kinases that play key roles in the activation of the RAS/RAF/MEK/ERK pathway and are often upregulated in a variety of tumor cell types.
BRAF L597 mutations in melanoma are associated with sensitivity to MEK inhibitors.
Dahlman et al. Cancer Discov. 2012 Jul 13. PMID: 22798288.Discovery of TAK-733, a potent and selective MEK allosteric site inhibitor for the treatment of cancer.
Dong et al. Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2011 Mar 1;21(5):1315-9. PMID: 21310613.
MEK kinases regulate the pathway that mediates proliferative and anti-apoptotic signaling factors that promote tumor growth and metastasis. TAK-733 is an MEK kinase inhibitor that entered phase I clinical trials for the treatment of cancer. A noteworthy feature of this short synthesis (25% yield overall) is the one-pot, three-step synthesis of the fluoropyridone D, in which the fluorine atom is present at the outset.
The reaction of F with the nosylate G gave a mixture of N- and O-alkylation products (8:1) from which the desired N-alkylation product was isolated by crystallization. The mixture of N-methyl pyrrolidine (NMP) and methanol used in the final deprotection step, helped to ensure formation of the desired polymorph. The nine-step discovery synthesis (3% overall yield) is also presented.