In recent years, several small molecules approved by FDA for clinical studies are promising anti-cancer agent. Among the kinases, Abelson Leukaemia (Abl), sarcoma (Src), epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and vascular endotelhial growth factor receptor (VEGFR) are considered as primary molecular targets for selective inhibition and the best successful targeted therapy of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) has been achieved in the treatment of Bcr (break point cluster)-Abl leukemia.
The majority of type 1 kinase inhibitors target the active conformation of ATP binding site. In consequence of intensive studies on kinases, type 2, type 3 (allosteric) and type 4 (covalent) inhibitors have been discovered beyond the type 1 inhibitors. Although the selectivity is a major problem for type 1 inhibitors, these new type of inhibitors are promising for finding new selective compounds, which may provide other therapeutic options for cancer therapy. They may also be a solution to overcome drug resistance that remains unresolved yet. Threedimensional structural determination provides the development of specific and highly binding properties of compounds. Studying the prediction of a binding mode of inhibitors, homology model developments from kinase– ligand co-crystal structures and isosteric replacements have been used to improve binding properties of inhibitors. In this review, critical results related to the design strategies of kinase specifically targeted to Src and Bcr-Abl kinases and therapeutic potential of novel inhibitors will be evaluated. The readers will be endowed with the functional role of Src and Bcr-Abl kinases that lead inhibitor design, the structural analysis of binding modes of kinase inhibitors, the current progress in terms of therapeutic interventions and the mission of leading groups in the field.
Keywords: Cancer, Inhibitor design, Resistance, Selectivity, Small molecule kinase inhibitors Src and Bcr-Abl kinases.