We have developed a novel strategy to identify enzyme inhibitors that interact directly with their enzyme targets. In the approach, an enzyme is immobilized on a sensor chip, and it is determined whether the immobilized enzyme is still active by incubation with model substrates and mass spectrometric analysis of the products. Putative inhibitors or mixtures containing putative inhibitors are then injected over the sensor chip for binding analysis with surface plasmon resonance. It is then tested whether the bound compounds inhibit the enzymatic activity by subsequent incubation with the model substrate and mass spectrometric analysis. If the bound compound inhibits the enzyme, the inhibitor is eluted from the enzyme and characterized by mass spectrometry. To test the strategy, it has been applied to the well-characterized interaction between trypsin and pure bovine pancreas trypsin inhibitor. Furthermore, fractions of plant extracts were screened for binding to and inhibition of carboxypeptidase B.
Analytical Chemistry, 2004, Vol 76, Issue 18, p. 5243-8