Unsaturated N-acetyl-D-glycosaminuronic acid glycosides as inhibitors of influenza virus sialidase
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The threat of pandemic influenza is a significant concern of governments worldwide. There is a very limited and relatively expensive armament to tackle such a pandemic should it occur. This fact provides much impetus to the scientific community for the discovery of new and less expensive anti-influenza drugs. Our longstanding interest in the inhibition of influenza virus sialidase, coupled with the development of simple carbohydrates that mimic an unsaturated derivative of the enzyme's naturally-occurring ligand, N-acetylneuraminic acid, has led us to investigate the development of influenza virus sialidase inhibitors based on these mimetics. We have successfully prepared a range of these compounds, in good yield, from the relatively inexpensive carbohydrate N-acetylglucosamine utilising a short synthetic procedure. We have employed a sialidase inhibition assay for biological evaluation of the target compounds and to our delight these mimetics have displayed significant inhibition of influenza virus sialidase.