Medicinal Chemistry Research

, Volume 25, Issue 6, pp 1175–1192 | Cite as

Ferulic acid amide derivatives as anticancer and antioxidant agents: synthesis, thermal, biological and computational studies

  • Naresh KumarEmail author
  • Sandeep Kumar
  • Sheenu Abbat
  • Kumar Nikhil
  • Sham M. Sondhi
  • Prasad V. Bharatam
  • Partha Roy
  • Vikas Pruthi
Original Research


The design and microwave-assisted synthesis of four series (IIIa–IIIo, Va–Vg, VIIa–VIIg and IXa–IXe) of mono and bis-amide derivatives of ferulic acid have been achieved under solvent-free conditions and, subsequently characterized by spectroscopic techniques. During thermal analysis, all the compounds were found stable up to 100 °C and decomposed through single step at higher temperature. The derivatives were screened for their in vitro cytotoxicity and antioxidant activity, respectively and observed that compound Vb was most active against breast (MCF-7; IC50 = 07.49 µM and MDA-MB-231; IC50 = 07.28 µM), Vd against lung (A549; IC50 = 07.11 µM) and liver (HepG2; IC50 = 08.32 µM), and Ve against cervical (HeLa; IC50 = 07.14 µM) cancer cell lines, while compounds IIIf, IIIl, IIIo, VIIe and IXa–IXe were found to exhibit the strong antioxidant activity with respect to their parent molecule. Previous reports for the biological applications of ferulic acid amides also confirmed the importance of work presented here. The 3D-QSAR studies for anticancer and antioxidant activities were also performed by using CoMFA, and the corresponding contour maps of electrostatic and steric fields have been computed. Statistical analysis between experimental and CoMFA-predicted data for pIC50 have been accomplished by curve fitting analysis which showed the significant correlation.

Graphical Abstract


Ferulic acid Amide derivatives Anticancer and antioxidant activity 3D-QSAR CoMFA 



Naresh Kumar gratefully acknowledges CSIR, New Delhi, India, for financial assistance, Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee and NIPER Mohali for instrumentation facility.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Authors declare no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

44_2016_1562_MOESM1_ESM.docx (15.8 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 16186 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Naresh Kumar
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sandeep Kumar
    • 2
  • Sheenu Abbat
    • 3
  • Kumar Nikhil
    • 1
  • Sham M. Sondhi
    • 2
  • Prasad V. Bharatam
    • 4
  • Partha Roy
    • 1
  • Vikas Pruthi
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiotechnologyIndian Institute of Technology RoorkeeRoorkeeIndia
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryIndian Institute of Technology RoorkeeRoorkeeIndia
  3. 3.Department of PharmacoinformaticsNIPERMohaliIndia
  4. 4.Department of Medicinal ChemistryNIPERMohaliIndia

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