Discovery of NVP-LEQ506, a Second-Generation Inhibitor of Smoothened



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First disclosure: Continued optimization provided a novel type of Smoothened (Smo) antagonist based on a pyridazine core. The compound, NVP-LEQ506, currently in phase I clinical trials, combines high intrinsic potency and good pharmacokinetic properties resulting in excellent efficacy in rodent tumor models of medulloblastoma. Activity against a Smo mutant conferring resistance observed in a previous clinical trial with a competitor compound suggests additional therapeutic potential.