High-Throughput Screening Identifies Ascorbyl Palmitate as a SIRT2 Deacetylase and Defatty-Acylase Inhibitor

Jun Young Hong, Joel Cassel, Jie Yang, Hening Lin, Brian P. Weiser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Small-molecule inhibitors of the human sirtuin SIRT2 are being developed because of their therapeutic potential in a variety of diseases. Here, we developed a high-throughput screen to identify novel SIRT2 inhibitors using a fluorescent SIRT2 probe, 1-aminoanthracene (AMA). AMA has high fluorescence when bound to SIRT2, and its fluorescence reduces >10-fold when it is displaced from SIRT2 by other ligands. We used this property of AMA to screen a library of known bioactive compounds for SIRT2 binding and discovered two known pharmaceutical compounds that bind SIRT2 with Kd values in the low μM range, ascorbyl palmitate and pictilisib. Both compounds inhibit the deacetylase and defatty-acylase activities of SIRT2. While pictilisib has selectivity for SIRT2, ascorbyl palmitate also inhibits the enzymatic activities of SIRT1 and SIRT6. Finally, we show that ascorbyl palmitate inhibits SIRT2 deacetylase and defatty-acylase activities in cells, and SIRT2 inhibition by ascorbyl palmitate contributes to the cytotoxicity of the compound. Our work discovered novel SIRT2 deacylase inhibitors and presents a screening approach that can be applied on a larger scale.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3484-3494
Number of pages11
Issue number22
StatePublished - Nov 19 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)
  • Organic Chemistry


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