Okadaic Acid: The Archetypal Serine / Threonine Protein Phosphatase Inhibitor
A. B. Dounay,
C. J. Forsyth.
As the first recognized member of the “okadaic acid class” of phosphatase inhibitors, the marine natural product okadaic acid is perhaps the most well-known member of a diverse array of secondary metabolites that have emerged as valuable probes for studying the roles of various cellular protein serine / threonine phosphatases. This review provides a historical perspective on the role that okadaic acid has played in stimulating a broad spectrum of modern scientific research as a result of the natural products ability to bind to and inhibit important classes of protein serine / threonine phosphatases. The relationships between the structure and biological activities of okadaic acid are briefly reviewed, as well as the structural information regarding the particular cellular receptors protein phosphatases 1 (PP1) and 2A. Laboratory syntheses of okadaic acid and its analogs are thoroughly reviewed. Finally, an interpretation of the critical contacts observed between okadaic acid and PP1 by X-ray crystallography is provided, and specific molecular recognition hypotheses that are testable via the synthesis and assay of non-natural analogs of okadaic acid are suggested.
Keywords: Okadaic Acid, threonine phosphatases, crystallography
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