Structural Determinants of Isoform Selectivity in PI3K Inhibitors

Michelle S. Miller, Philip E. Thompson, Sandra B. Gabelli

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinases (PI3Ks) are important therapeutic targets for the treatment of cancer, thrombosis, and inflammatory and immune diseases. The four highly homologous Class I isoforms, PI3K, PI3K, PI3K and PI3K have unique, non-redundant physiological roles and as such, isoform selectivity has been a key consideration driving inhibitor design and development. In this review, we discuss the structural biology of PI3Ks and how our growing knowledge of structure has influenced the medicinal chemistry of PI3K inhibitors. We present an analysis of the available structure-selectivity-activity relationship data to highlight key insights into how the various regions of the PI3K binding site influence isoform selectivity. The picture that emerges is one that is far from simple and emphasizes the complex nature of protein-inhibitor binding, involving protein flexibility, energetics, water networks and interactions with non-conserved residues.

Original languageEnglish
Article number82
Number of pages35
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 26 Feb 2019


  • isoform selectivity
  • p110
  • p85
  • phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase
  • PI3K
  • PIK3CA

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