In the past years, many diazenyl compounds (i.e diazenecarboxamides, diazeniumdiolate
prodrugs, diazenyl complexes etc.) have been prepared for the evaluation of their cytotoxic
potential towards various cancer cell lines. Majority of them have shown promising cytotoxic
activities even against several drug resistant cell lines. These derivatives have shown their effect
by acting as alkylating agents, releasers of cytotoxic NO, targeting receptors like tyrosine kinase,
EGFR or targeting enzymes like GST, AGT, CDKs etc. Their interaction with different receptors
or enzymes leads to DNA damage, necrosis or apoptosis resulting in cell death. The present
review will cover updated information on the synthetic methodologies and cytotoxic potential of
diazenyl derivatives developed during the past years along with the recent developments. This
may prove to be helpful for the researchers to develop novel anticancer drugs in future by
molecular modifications of potential derivatives with better cytotoxic activities.
Keywords: Diazenes, cancer, complexes, glutathione, nitric oxide, cell lines, prodrug.
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