Efficacy of eight experimental bispyridinium oximes against paraoxon-induced mortality: Comparison with the conventional oximes pralidoxime and obidoxime

S. M. Nurulain, D. E. Lorke, M. Y. Hasan, M. Shafiullah, K. Kuča, K. Musilek, Georg A. Petroianu

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35 Citations (Scopus)


Recently, several experimental K-oximes with two functional aldoxime groups have been synthesized that show excellent in vitro efficacy in protecting acetylcholinesterase (AChE) from inhibition by a broad variety of organophosphorus compounds (OPCs). However, oximes themselves are also AChE inhibitors, albeit at higher concentrations, which is a major cause of their toxicity and may be a dose-limiting factor in oxime therapy. To assess the efficacy of the experimental K-oximes in vivo, the extent of oxime-conferred protection from mortality induced by paraoxon was quantified. Rats received paraoxon in a dosage of 1, 5, or 10 μmol, and immediately thereafter intraperitoneal injections of the respective oxime at a dosage of half the LD01. The relative risk of death (RR) over time was estimated by Cox survival analysis for treatment with experimental K-oximes (K-53, K-74, K-75, K-107, K-108, and K-113), with the clinically available oximes pralidoxime (2-PAM) and obidoxime, and with the well-characterized K-oximes K-27 and K-48, comparing results with the no-treatment group. Best protection was conferred by K-27, reducing the RR to 20% of controls (P ≤ 0.05), which was significantly (P ≤ 0.05) better than all other tested oximes. Marked reduction in mortality was also achieved by K-48 and the three new bispyridinium oximes containing two aldoxime groups, but no xylene linker: K-48 (RR = 0.32), K-53 (RR = 0.36), K-74 (RR = 0.42), K-75 (RR = 0.35). This effect was significantly (P ≤ 0.05) superior to that of all other oximes, except K-27. The remaining oximes, i.e., obidoxime (RR = 0.64), 2-PAM (RR = 0.78), K-107 (RR = 0.70), K-108 (RR = 0.77), and K-113 (RR = 0.87) reduced paraoxon-induced mortality only poorly, but significantly (P ≤ 0.05). Our data show that K-27, K-48, K-53, K-74, and K-75, due to their far superior in vivo efficacy, are the most promising candidates to eventually replace the established oximes 2-PAM and obidoxime. Further studies in other species exposed to a broader spectrum of OPCs are, however, necessary before considering their use in humans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-67
Number of pages8
JournalNeurotoxicity Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Aldoxime
  • Cox analysis
  • K-oxime
  • Organophosphate
  • Paraoxon
  • Rat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Toxicology


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