Discovery of a Potent and Selective Covalent Inhibitor and Activity-Based Probe for the Deubiquitylating Enzyme UCHL1, with Antifibrotic Activity
Panyain N., Godinat A., Lanyon-Hogg T., Lachiondo-Ortega S., Will EJ., Soudy C., Mondal M., Mason K., Elkhalifa S., Smith LM., Harrigan JA., Tate EW.
Ubiquitin carboxy-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCHL1) is a deubiquitylating enzyme that is proposed as a potential therapeutic target in neurodegeneration, cancer, and liver and lung fibrosis. Herein we report the discovery of the most potent and selective UCHL1 probe (IMP-1710) to date based on a covalent inhibitor scaffold and apply this probe to identify and quantify target proteins in intact human cells. IMP-1710 stereoselectively labels the catalytic cysteine of UCHL1 at low nanomolar concentration in cells. We further demonstrate that potent and selective UCHL1 inhibitors block pro-fibrotic responses in a cellular model of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, supporting the potential of UCHL1 as a potential therapeutic target in fibrotic diseases.