International Journal of Medicinal Chemistry

Biophysical Approaches toward Carbonic Anhydrase Drug Development and Medical Applications

Publishing date
01 Sep 2018
Submission deadline
04 May 2018

Lead Editor

1National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, USA

2European Spallation Source, Lund, Sweden

3University of Florida, Gainesville, USA

Biophysical Approaches toward Carbonic Anhydrase Drug Development and Medical Applications


Carbonic anhydrases (CAs; EC have been studied for nearly 90 years. Since their discovery, CAs have been at the forefront of scientific discovery, from understanding enzymatic reactions to drug discovery and clinical medicine. CAs are a family of metalloenzymes that are found in all domains of life and viruses that catalyze the reversible conversion of CO2 and H2O to HCO3- and a proton, one of the most important reactions in biology. At least seven genetically distinct CA families are known to date (α-, β-, γ-, δ-, ζ-, η-, and θ-CAs), with α-CAs playing critical roles in human health as both drug targets and biomarkers for diseases. In humans this includes the treatment of epilepsy, altitude sickness, osteoporosis, cancer, and neurological disorders and being a potential antibiotic target in bacteria. To date, inhibitors are being developed, designed, and discovered towards CA, with several currently used clinically or in clinical trials. Much of this progress has been, and continues to be, through the utilization of techniques in biophysics.

In this special issue, we aim to highlight biophysical studies of CA applications in human health and invite both original research articles and reviews. We encourage submissions spanning the whole of biophysics with emphasis on novel experimental methods or approaches applied to biomedical studies of CA. In addition, we invite papers that emphasize theoretical and computational approaches toward CA drug discovery. The contributions of this special issue will seek to both advance our understanding of CAs role in disease and drug discovery and also propel the fields of biophysics toward solving problems in modern medicine.

Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Novel biophysical methods for CA therapeutic development
  • Applications of X-ray and neutron diffraction/scattering for molecular studies of CA
  • Calorimetry, kinetics, and NMR studies for CA lead discovery and optimization
  • In silico screening for discovery or optimization of CA inhibitors/activators
  • Structure-based design and synthesis of novel CA therapeutics
  • Molecular dynamics simulations and developments of mathematical models
  • Biophysical approaches toward deciphering the role of CAs in disease states
  • Biophysical approaches to establish novel applications of CA in medicine

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