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A docking study of a novel series of benzofuran derivatives with ERα was conducted. In this study, we report the synthesis of a novel series of benzofuran derivatives and evaluation of their anticancer activity in vitro against MCF-7 human breast cancer cells, as well as their potential toxicity to ER-independent MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells, human renal epithelial HEK-293 cells, and human immortal keratinocytes (HaCaT cells) by using the MTT colorimetric assay. The screening results indicated that the target compounds exhibited anti-breast cancer activity. The target compound 2-benzoyl-3-methyl-6-[2-(morpholin-4-yl)ethoxy]benzofuran hydrochloride (4e) exhibited excellent activity against anti-oestrogen receptor-dependent breast cancer cells and low toxicity. The preliminary structure-activity relationships of the target benzofuran derivatives have been summarised. In conclusion, the novel benzofuran scaffold may be a promising lead for the development of potential oestrogen receptor inhibitors.

Original publication




Journal article


Bioorg Chem

Publication Date





Benzofuran derivatives, Biological activity, Breast cancer, Docking, Inhibitor, Oestrogen receptor, Synthesis, Antineoplastic Agents, Benzofurans, Breast Neoplasms, Cell Line, Tumor, Cell Proliferation, Cell Survival, Drug Design, Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor, Female, Humans, Molecular Docking Simulation, Receptors, Estrogen, Spectrum Analysis, Structure-Activity Relationship