Journal of Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research


Prostate and breast cancer are the number one and number two cancer sites, respectively, for male and females within the United States.1 Increased levels of the enzyme fatty acid synthase have been found in rapidly dividing cancer cells. This enzyme is responsible for the de novo synthesis of fatty acids in human cells, which are essential to cell growth and survival. The goal then for this research is to synthesize and design a new synthesis of 5-(alkylthio)-1Hbenzo[ d]imidazole-2,6-diones intended to successfully inhibit fatty acid synthase (FASN) by binding allosterically to the thioesterase domain of FASN. Thus by selectively inhibiting FASN in rapidly dividing cells, the production of fatty acids is inhibited and cancer cells starve. The focus of the current research is to carry out the oxidation of 5-hydroxy-1,3-dihydro-2Hbenzimidazole- 2-one to 1H-benzimidazole-2,6-dione through the use of sodium hypochlorite as an oxidizing agent. The product was successfully synthesized and purified. The next step is the addition of an alkylthio group to the six membered ring.