Tetrahydrocurcumin Derivatives Enhanced the Anti-Inflammatory Activity of Curcumin: Synthesis, Biological Evaluation, and Structure–Activity Relationship Analysis




González, Yisett
Mojica-Flores, Randy
Moreno-Labrador, Dilan
Pecchio, Marisín
Rao, K. S. Jagannatha
Ahumedo-Monterrosa, Maicol
Fernández, Patricia L.
Larionov, Oleg V.
Lakey-Beitia, Johant

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Tetrahydrocurcumin, the most abundant curcumin transformation product in biological systems, can potentially be a new alternative therapeutic agent with improved anti-inflammatory activity and higher bioavailability than curcumin. In this article, we describe the synthesis and evaluation of the anti-inflammatory activities of tetrahydrocurcumin derivatives. Eleven tetrahydrocurcumin derivatives were synthesized via Steglich esterification on both sides of the phenolic rings of tetrahydrocurcumin with the aim of improving the anti-inflammatory activity of this compound. We showed that tetrahydrocurcumin (2) inhibited TNF-α and IL-6 production but not PGE2 production. Three tetrahydrocurcumin derivatives inhibited TNF-α production, five inhibited IL-6 production, and three inhibited PGE2 production. The structure–activity relationship analysis suggested that two factors could contribute to the biological activities of these compounds: the presence or absence of planarity and their structural differences. Among the tetrahydrocurcumin derivatives, cyclic compound 13 was the most active in terms of TNF-α production, showing even better activity than tetrahydrocurcumin. Acyclic compound 11 was the most effective in terms of IL-6 production and retained the same effect as tetrahydrocurcumin. Moreover, acyclic compound 12 was the most active in terms of PGE2 production, displaying better inhibition than tetrahydrocurcumin. A 3D-QSAR analysis suggested that the anti-inflammatory activities of tetrahydrocurcumin derivatives could be increased by adding bulky groups at the ends of compounds 2, 11, and 12.




Molecules 28 (23): 7787 (2023)