Small molecules as inhibitors of PCSK9: Current status and future challenges.


State Key Laboratory of Natural Medicines and Department of Medicinal Chemistry, China Pharmaceutical University, 24 Tong Jia Xiang, Nanjing, 210009, PR China. Electronic address: [Email]


Proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) plays an important role in regulating lipoprotein metabolism by binding to low-density lipoprotein receptors (LDLRs), leading to their degradation. LDL cholesterol (LDL-C) lowering drugs that operate through the inhibition of PCSK9 are being pursued for the management of hypercholesterolemia and reducing its associated atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. Two PCSK9-blocking monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), alirocumab and evolocumab, were approved in 2015. However, the high costs of PCSK9 antibody drugs impede their prior authorization practices and reduce their long-term adherence. Given the potential of small-molecule drugs, the development of small-molecule PCSK9 inhibitors has attracted considerable attention. This article provides an overview of the recent development of small-molecule PCSK9 inhibitors disclosed in the literature and patent applications, and different approaches that have been pursued to modulate the functional activity of PCSK9 using small molecules are described. Challenges and potential strategies in developing small-molecule PCSK9 inhibitors are also discussed.


Hypercholesterolemia,Inhibitor,LDL-C,Natural products,PCSK9 protein,Patent,Small-molecule,