Recent advances in targeting protein arginine methyltransferase enzymes in cancer therapy.

Smith E, Zhou W, Shindiapina P, Sif S, Li C, Baiocchi RA
Expert Opin Ther Targets 22 527-545 01/01/2018

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Exploration in the field of epigenetics has revealed the diverse roles of the protein arginine methyltransferase (PRMT) family of proteins in multiple disease states. These findings have led to the development of specific inhibitors and discovery of several new classes of drugs with potential to treat both benign and malignant conditions. Areas covered: We provide an overview on the role of PRMT enzymes in healthy and malignant cells, highlighting the role of arginine methylation in specific pathways relevant to cancer pathogenesis. Additionally, we describe structure and catalytic activity of PRMT and discuss the mechanisms of action of novel small molecule inhibitors of specific members of the arginine methyltransferase family. Expert opinion: As the field of PRMT biology advances, it's becoming clear that this class of enzymes is highly relevant to maintaining normal physiologic processes as well and disease pathogenesis. We discuss the potential impact of PRMT inhibitors as a broad class of drugs, including the pleiotropic effects, off target effects the need for more detailed PRMT-centric interactomes, and finally, the potential for targeting this class of enzymes in clinical development of experimental therapeutics for cancer.

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