Gold-Based Medicine: A Paradigm Shift in Anti-Cancer Therapy?

Chien Yeo, Kah Ooi, Edward Tiekink
2018 Molecules  
A new era of metal-based drugs started in the 1960s, heralded by the discovery of potent platinum-based complexes, commencing with cisplatin [(H 3 N) 2 PtCl 2 ], which are effective anti-cancer chemotherapeutic drugs. While clinical applications of gold-based drugs largely relate to the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, attention has turned to the investigation of the efficacy of gold(I) and gold(III) compounds for anti-cancer applications. This review article provides an account of the latest
more » ... research conducted during the last decade or so on the development of gold compounds and their potential activities against several cancers as well as a summary of possible mechanisms of action/biological targets. The promising activities and increasing knowledge of gold-based drug metabolism ensures that continued efforts will be made to develop gold-based anti-cancer agents. 2 of 26 of phosphane and thiol ligands in auranofin, for example, stabilises the gold(I) centre, and new species have been designed to improve the efficacy of such compounds [14] [15] [16] . More recent efforts have focused upon the development of gold(III) complexes [17, 24] , through stabilisation of the higher oxidation states achieved with other, less labile ligands, bearing for example, carbon-, nitrogen-and oxygen-ligating atoms, heralds a bright future for gold-based drugs [14, 16, 25, 26] . The stability of gold compounds in the physiological environment is essential as it accounts for the successful delivery of the active moiety to the targeted sites. In a recent review, the toxicological profiles and biological targets of prominent gold compounds were discussed. Gold compounds possess conspicuous therapeutic effects, and this warrants further investigation into their mechanisms of action to overcome adverse toxicity [27] .
doi:10.3390/molecules23061410 pmid:29891764 fatcat:j4sqimrvvng6vbam7xhq5w6ewi