DEVELOPMENT OF PHOSPHORAMIDATE PRONUCLEOTIDE DI-ESTERS BEARING AN ANCHIMERIC-ASSISTANCE MOIETY Aniekan Okon, Peter Bitterman, Carston R. Wagner* Department of Medicinal Chemistry, University of Minnesota Minneapolis, 55455 Nucleoside analogues are used as therapeutic agents for antiviral and anticancer interventions. These agents rely on a series of phosphorylation steps to their corresponding 5’ triphosphates, which is ultimately the active metabolite. However, certain drawbacks, chief of which is the down-regulation of essential kinases of the initial phosphorylation step, reduces the efficacy of nucleoside analogues as therapeutic agents, which could lead to cellular resistance. A strategy for overcoming the problem of reduced kinase activity would be to directly deliver nucleotides in vivo. However, the polar nature of nucleotides makes it highly unlikely that such direct delivery can be achieved. In order to improve cellular delivery of such a highly polar compound, pronucleotide strategies have been developed. Phosphoramidate pronucleotides have been demonstrated to have effective cellular delivery and as a result many laboratories and pharmaceutical companies have developed phosphoramidate pronucleotide-based compounds. In particular, we have previously demonstrated the effective cellular delivery of various nucleoside analogues. Unfortunately, these phosphoramidate monoesters have poor in vivo bioavailability, despite good in vitro potency. To overcome this liability, phosphoramidate di-ester pronucleotides have been developed. These di-esters undergo a series of activation steps to reveal the desired nucleotide. This work presents our efforts at developing di-ester pronucleotides bearing an anchimeric-assisting moiety to facilitate conversion to the monoester intermediate. Such strategy bypasses esterase activation that is common for most di-ester pronucleotides reported in literature.