Design, synthesis and development of PDE5 inhibitors

  • Guocheng Wang

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


This research project is concerned with the design, synthesis and development of new phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5) inhibitors with improved selectivities and lower toxicities. Two series of a 5 member and a 6 member ring fused heterocyclic compounds were designed, and synthesized. By alteration of starting materials and fragments, two virtual libraries, each is consisted of close to hundred compounds, were obtained successfully. The screening of sexual stimulation activity with rabbits demonstrated both groups of compounds were able to stimulate rabbit penile erection significantly. The following toxicity studies revealed 2-(substituted-sulfonylphenyl)-imidazo [1,5-a]-1,3,5-triazine-4-(3H)-one group possessed an unacceptable toxicity with oral LD50 about 200mg/kg; while 2-(substituted-sulfonylphenyl)-pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidin-4-one group showed an acceptable toxicity with oral LD50 over 2000mg/kg. The continued bioactivity studies showed yonkenafil, the representative of 2-(substituted-sulfonylphenyl)-pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidin-4-one group, has a better selectivity towards PDE5 and PDE6 than sildenafil and a better overall profile of sexual stimulation on animals than sildenafil. Chronic toxicity studies of yonkenafil further confirmed yonkenafil did not cause any serious side effect and damage on animal models and most actions were explainable. Based on evidences of the above studies, yonkenafil were recommended to enter clinical trials by the regulation authority of China, SFDA. Currently yonkenafil has been through the Phase I clinical trials and ready to progress into Phase II. Hopefully, yonkenafil will provide an alternative to the ED patients in the future.
Date of Award2009
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorYong F Wang (Supervisor)


  • design
  • synthesis
  • development
  • PDE5 indicators

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