Fifteen platinum(II)-based metallointercalators have been synthesised that utilise substituted 1,10-phenanthroline (phen) ligands, including 5-chloro-1,10-phenanthroline (5-Cl-phen), 5-methyl-1,10-phenanthroline (5-CH3-phen), 5-amino-1,10-phenanthroline (5-NH2-phen), 5-nitro-1,10-phenanthroline (5-NO2-phen) and dipyrido[3,2-d:2′,3′-f]quinoxaline (dpq), and achiral ethylenediamine (en) and the chiral ancillary ligands 1S,2S-diaminocyclohexane (S,S-dach) and 1R,2R-diaminocyclohexane (R,R-dach). Their cytotoxicity in the L1210 murine leukaemia cell line was determined using growth inhibition assays. The most cytotoxic metal complexes are those that contain S,S-dach ancillary ligands and 5-CH3-phen intercalating ligands. One metallointercalator [Pt(5-CH3-phen)(S,S-dach)]Cl2 (5MESS), displays a 5-10-fold increase in cytotoxicity compared to the clinical agent cisplatin. From DNA binding experiments there appears to be no significant difference between any of the metal complexes, indicating that neither DNA binding affinity nor the mode of binding/DNA adduct formed is the sole determinant of the cytotoxicity of this family of platinum(II)-based metallointercalators.
Kemp, S., Wheate, N. J., Buck, D. P., Nikac, M., Collins, J. G., & Aldrich-Wright, J. R. (2007). The effect of ancillary ligand chirality and phenanthroline functional group substitution on the cytotoxicity of platinum(II)-based metallointercalators. Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, 101(7), 1049-1058. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jinorgbio.2007.04.009