Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.
Skip to main content

Phosphonocarboxylate (PC) analogs of the anti-osteoporotic drugs, bisphosphonates, represent the first class of selective inhibitors of Rab geranylgeranyl transferase (RabGGTase, RGGT), an enzyme implicated in several diseases including ovarian, breast and skin cancer. Here we present the synthesis and biological characterization of an extended set of this class of compounds, including lipophilic derivatives of the known RGGT inhibitors. From this new panel of PCs, we have identified an inhibitor of RGGT that is of similar potency as the most active published phosphonocarboxylate, but of higher selectivity towards this enzyme compared to prenyl pyrophosphate synthases. New insights into structural requirements are also presented, showing that only PC analogs of the most potent 3rd generation bisphosphonates inhibit RGGT. In addition, the first phosphonocarboxylate-derived GGPPS inhibitor is reported.

Original publication




Journal article


European journal of medicinal chemistry

Publication Date





77 - 89


Musculoskeletal Programme, Institute of Medical Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Foresterhill, Aberdeen AB252ZD, UK.


Cell Line, Hela Cells, Animals, Cattle, Humans, Alkyl and Aryl Transferases, Enzyme Inhibitors, Cell Survival, Molecular Structure, Structure-Activity Relationship, Dose-Response Relationship, Drug, Organophosphonates