DOI: 10.3390/v15122367 ISSN: 1999-4915

Recent Advances in the Development of Sulfamoyl-Based Hepatitis B Virus Nucleocapsid Assembly Modulators

Sandesha Nayak, Jayaraj Gowda, Syed Azeem Abbas, Hyejin Kim, Soo Bong Han
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases

Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is the primary contributor to severe liver ailments, encompassing conditions such as cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Globally, 257 million people are affected by HBV annually and 887,000 deaths are attributed to it, representing a substantial health burden. Regrettably, none of the existing therapies for chronic hepatitis B (CHB) have achieved satisfactory clinical cure rates. This issue stems from the existence of covalently closed circular DNA (cccDNA), which is difficult to eliminate from the nucleus of infected hepatocytes. HBV genetic material is composed of partially double-stranded DNA that forms complexes with viral polymerase inside an icosahedral capsid composed of a dimeric core protein. The HBV core protein, consisting of 183 to 185 amino acids, plays integral roles in multiple essential functions within the HBV replication process. In this review, we describe the effects of sulfamoyl-based carboxamide capsid assembly modulators (CAMs) on capsid assembly, which can suppress HBV replication and disrupt the production of new cccDNA. We present research on classical, first-generation sulfamoyl benzocarboxamide CAMs, elucidating their structural composition and antiviral efficacy. Additionally, we explore newly identified sulfamoyl-based CAMs, including sulfamoyl bicyclic carboxamides, sulfamoyl aromatic heterocyclic carboxamides, sulfamoyl aliphatic heterocyclic carboxamides, cyclic sulfonamides, and non-carboxamide sulfomoyl-based CAMs. We believe that certain molecules derived from sulfamoyl groups have the potential to be developed into essential components of a well-suited combination therapy, ultimately yielding superior clinical efficacy outcomes in the future.

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