Native electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) was applied to analyze the binding of compounds generated during fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) campaigns against two functionally distinct proteins, the X-linked inhibitor of apoptosis protein (XIAP) and cyclin-dependent kinase 2 (CDK2). Compounds of different molecular weights and a wide range of binding affinities obtained from the hits to leads and lead optimization stages of FBDD campaigns were studied, and their dissociation constants (Kd) were measured by native ESI-MS. We demonstrate that native ESI-MS has the potential to be applied to the stages of an FBDD campaign downstream of primary screening for the detection and quantification of protein-ligand binding. Native ESI-MS was used to derive Kd values for compounds binding to XIAP, and the dissociation of the complex between XIAP and a peptide derived from the second mitochondria-derived activator of caspases (SMAC) protein induced by one of the test compounds was also investigated. Affinities of compounds binding to CDK2 gave Kd values in the low nanomolar to low millimolar range, and Kd values generated by MS and isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) followed the same trend for both proteins. Practical considerations for the application of native ESI-MS are discussed in detail.
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Agni Gavriilidou et al., “Advancing Life Sciences R&D 2018 Online, Application of Native ESI-MS to Characterize Interactions between Compounds Derived from Fragment-Based Discovery Campaigns and Two Pharmaceutically Relevant Proteins.” SLAS Discovery, DOI: 10.1177/2472555218775921