- Rho family
Cdc42, a member of the Rho family of GTPases, has been shown to play a role in cell adhesion, cytoskeletal arrangement, phagocytosis and cell motility and migration, in addition to a host of other diverse biological processes. The function of Rho-family GTPases in disease pathogenesis has been well established and identification of small, cell permeable molecules that selectively and reversibly regulate Rho GTPases is of high scientific and potentially therapeutic interest. There has been limited success in identifying inhibitors that specifically interact with small Rho family GTPases. The identified probe, ML141 (CID-2950007), is demonstrated to be a potent, selective and reversible non-competitive inhibitor of Cdc42 GTPase suitable for in vitro assays, with low micromolar potency and selectivity against other members of the Rho family of GTPases (Rac1, Rab2, Rab7). Given the highly complementary nature of the function of the Rho family GTPases, Cdc42 selective inhibitors such as those reported here should help untangle the roles of the proteins in this family.