A team of U.S. researchers has described a new mitogen-activated protein kinase 8 (JNK; MAPK8) inhibitor that targets JNK's substrate docking site-instead of its ATP binding site-to treat type 2 diabetes.1 The targeting strategy should be applicable to other diseases in which JNK is implicated and to the inhibition of other protein kinases.
The research team from the Burnham Institute for Medical Research, the University of California, San Diego and Invitrogen Corp.'s Invitrogen Discovery Services unit in Wisconsin was led by Maurizio Pellecchia, professor of infectious diseases at Burnham.
"Our goal is to provide chemical probes that provide information about the JNK docking site and its requirements," Pellecchia told SciBX. "This is a basic science approach with a clear translational component. The compounds themselves are free for research purposes."