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Dorsomorphin (Compound C)

(Synonyms: Compound C) Catalog No.: GC17243

Dorsomorphin (Compound C) (Compound C) is a selective and ATP-competitive AMPK inhibitor (Ki=109 nM in the absence of AMP). Dorsomorphin (Compound C) (BML-275) selectively inhibits BMP type I receptors ALK2, ALK3, and ALK6. Dorsomorphin (Compound C) induces autophagy.

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Dorsomorphin (Compound C) Chemical Structure

Cas No.:866405-64-3

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10mM (in 1mL DMSO)
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Sample solution is provided at 25 µL, 10mM.

Product has been cited by 6 publications

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Cell experiment [1]:

Cell lines


Preparation Method

Cells were cultured in DMEM/F12 medium containing 10% fetal bovine serum and 10% streptomycin. Then, 20 μM cisplatin was used to induce obvious apoptosis as previously indicated

Reaction Conditions

Cells were cultured in 20 μM of cisplatin in the presence or absence of 20 mM compound C for 24 h. To evaluate the renal tubular cells apoptosis, morphologic assay and immunoblot were used to analyze the cleaved caspase3 and PARP.


Dorsomorphin (Compound C) could reduce the apoptosis of cells induced by cisplatin. Moreover, compound C also decreases the expression of c-caspase3 and c-PARP in cisplatin treatment, and the protective effect of compound C was dose-dependent.

Animal experiment [1]:

Animal models

Male C57BL/6 mice (8–10 weeks)

Preparation Method

Mice were injected intraperitoneally with cisplatin (30 mg/kg) oncely. The control group of mice were injected with the same dose of saline. Dorsomorphin (Compound C) was dissolved in DMSO and injected intraperitoneally at 10 mg/kg 1 h before the injection of cisplatin. The no-compound C animals were administered with a comparable volume of DMSO. All the mice were euthanized at 72 h.

Dosage form

10 mg/kg


Dorsomorphin (Compound C) could reduce the severe renal tubular damage caused by cisplatin in mice. Compound C also reduces the apoptosis of renal tubular cells in mice.


[1]. Li F, et al. Compound C Protects Against Cisplatin-Induced Nephrotoxicity Through Pleiotropic Effects. Front Physiol. 2020 Dec 23;11:614244.


Dorsomorphin (Compound C) is an agent that used as a cell-permeable AMPK inhibitor. It could rescue the antiproliferative actions of AICAR and metformin. Moreover, dorsomorphin (Compound C) is also used as a selective inhibitor of the BMP pathway. Compound C could inhibit a number of kinases other than AMPK.[1]

In vitro experiments indicate that Compound C inhibits AMPK activity and proliferation of human glioma cells. Dorsomorphin (Compound C) also reduces the apoptosis of cells induced by cisplatin, and decreases the expression of c-caspase3 and c-PARP in cisplatin treatment.

In vivo study demonstrate compound C attenuates cisplatin-induced nephrotoxicity in mice, and alleviates c-caspase 3 and c-PARP induced by cisplatin in kidney tissues.[1][2]

[1].Liu X, et al. The AMPK inhibitor compound C is a potent AMPK-independent antiglioma agent. Mol Cancer Ther. 2014 Mar;13(3):596-605.
[2].Li F, et al. Compound C Protects Against Cisplatin-Induced Nephrotoxicity Through Pleiotropic Effects. Front Physiol. 2020 Dec 23;11:614244.

Chemical Properties

Cas No. 866405-64-3 SDF
Synonyms Compound C
Chemical Name 6-[4-(2-piperidin-1-ylethoxy)phenyl]-3-pyridin-4-ylpyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidine
Canonical SMILES C1CCN(CC1)CCOC2=CC=C(C=C2)C3=CN4C(=C(C=N4)C5=CC=NC=C5)N=C3
Formula C24H25N5O M.Wt 399.49
Solubility ≥ 8.49 mg/mL in DMSO with ultrasonic and warming Storage 4°C, protect from light
General tips For obtaining a higher solubility , please warm the tube at 37 ℃ and shake it in the ultrasonic bath for a while.Stock solution can be stored below -20℃ for several months.
Shipping Condition Evaluation sample solution : ship with blue ice
All other available size: ship with RT , or blue ice upon request

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Research Update

Compound C/Dorsomorphin: Its Use and Misuse as an AMPK Inhibitor

The evolutionary conserved energy sensor AMPK plays crucial roles in many biological processes-both during normal development and pathology. Loss-of-function genetic studies in mice as well as in lower organisms underscore its importance in embryonic development, stress physiology in the adult, and in key metabolic disorders including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, and metabolic syndrome. In contrast to several other kinases important in human health and medicine where specific/selective inhibitors are available, no AMPK-specific inhibitors are available. The only reagent called dorsomorphin or compound C that is occasionally used as an AMPK inhibitor unfortunately inhibits several other kinases much more potently than AMPK and is therefore highly non-specific. In this chapter, we discuss the pros and cons of using this reagent to study AMPK functions.

The AMPK inhibitor compound C is a potent AMPK-independent antiglioma agent

AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is an evolutionarily conserved energy sensor important for cell growth, proliferation, survival, and metabolic regulation. Active AMPK inhibits biosynthetic enzymes like mTOR and acetyl CoA carboxylase (required for protein and lipid synthesis, respectively) to ensure that cells maintain essential nutrients and energy during metabolic crisis. Despite our knowledge about this incredibly important kinase, no specific chemical inhibitors are available to examine its function. However, one small molecule known as compound C (also called dorsomorphin) has been widely used in cell-based, biochemical, and in vivo assays as a selective AMPK inhibitor. In nearly all these reports including a recent study in glioma, the biochemical and cellular effects of compound C have been attributed to its inhibitory action toward AMPK. While examining the status of AMPK activation in human gliomas, we observed that glioblastomas express copious amount of active AMPK. Compound C effectively reduced glioma viability in vitro both by inhibiting proliferation and inducing cell death. As expected, compound C inhibited AMPK; however, all the antiproliferative effects of this compound were AMPK independent. Instead, compound C killed glioma cells by multiple mechanisms, including activation of the calpain/cathepsin pathway, inhibition of AKT, mTORC1/C2, cell-cycle block at G2-M, and induction of necroptosis and autophagy. Importantly, normal astrocytes were significantly less susceptible to compound C. In summary, compound C is an extremely potent antiglioma agent but we suggest that caution should be taken in interpreting results when this compound is used as an AMPK inhibitor.

Luteolin attenuates sepsis?induced myocardial injury by enhancing autophagy in mice

Sepsis?induced cardiomyopathy (SIC) is a complication of severe sepsis and septic shock characterized by an invertible myocardial depression. This study sought to explore the potential effects and mechanism of luteolin, a flavonoid polyphenolic compound, in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)?induced myocardial injury. Experimental mice were randomly allocated into 3 groups (25 mice in each group): The control group (NC), the LPS group (LPS) and the LPS + luteolin group (LPS + Lut). Before the SIC model was induced, luteolin was dissolved in DMSO and injected intraperitoneally for 10 days into LPS + Lut group mice. NC group and LPS group mice received an equal volume of DMSO for 10 days. On day 11, the animal model of sepsis?induced cardiac dysfunction was induced by intraperitoneal injection of LPS. A total of 12 h after LPS injection, measurements and comparisons were made among the groups. Luteolin administration improved cardiac function, attenuated the inflammatory response, alleviated mitochondrial injury, decreased oxidative stress, inhibited cardiac apoptosis and enhanced autophagy. In addition, luteolin significantly decreased the phosphorylation of AMP?activated protein kinase (AMPK) in septic heart tissue. The protective effect of luteolin was abolished by 3?methyladenine (an autophagy inhibitor) and dorsomorphin (compound C, an AMPK inhibitor), as evidenced by decreased autophagic activity, destabilized mitochondrial membrane potential and increased apoptosis in LPS?treated cardiomyocytes, but was mimicked by 5?aminoimidazole?4?carboxamide ribonucleotide (an AMPK activator), suggesting that luteolin attenuates LPS?induced myocardial injury by increasing autophagy through AMPK activation. Luteolin may be a promising therapeutic agent for treating SIC.

Compound C Inhibits Ovarian Cancer Progression via PI3K-AKT-mTOR-NF百B Pathway

Epithelial Ovarian cancer (OvCa) is the leading cause of death from gynecologic malignancies in the United States, with most patients diagnosed at late stages. High-grade serous cancer (HGSC) is the most common and lethal subtype. Despite aggressive surgical debulking and chemotherapy, recurrence of chemo-resistant disease occurs in ~80% of patients. Thus, developing therapeutics that not only targets OvCa cell survival, but also target their interactions within their unique peritoneal tumor microenvironment (TME) is warranted. Herein, we report therapeutic efficacy of compound C (also known as dorsomorphin) with a novel mechanism of action in OvCa. We found that CC not only inhibited OvCa growth and invasiveness, but also blunted their reciprocal crosstalk with macrophages, and mesothelial cells. Mechanistic studies indicated that compound C exerts its effects on OvCa cells through inhibition of PI3K-AKT-NF百B pathways, whereas in macrophages and mesothelial cells, CC inhibited cancer-cell-induced canonical NF百B activation. We further validated the specificity of the PI3K-AKT-NF百B as targets of compound C by overexpression of constitutively active subunits as well as computational modeling. In addition, real-time monitoring of OvCa cellular bioenergetics revealed that compound C inhibits ATP production, mitochondrial respiration, and non-mitochondrial oxygen consumption. Importantly, compound C significantly decreased tumor burden of OvCa xenografts in nude mice and increased their sensitivity to cisplatin-treatment. Moreover, compound C re-sensitized patient-derived resistant cells to cisplatin. Together, our findings highlight compound C as a potent multi-faceted therapeutic in OvCa.

Ambivalent effects of compound C (dorsomorphin) on inflammatory response in LPS-stimulated rat primary microglial cultures

It was proven that compound C displays beneficial effects in models of inflammatory-induced anemia, ischemic stroke, and fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva. Compound C influence on microglia, playing a major role in neuroinflammation, has not been evaluated yet. The aim of the present study was to determine the effect of compound C on cytokine release, NO, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. The rat microglial cultures were obtained by shaking the primary mixed glial cultures. Cytokine and nitrite concentrations were assayed using ELISA kits. ROS were assayed with nitroblue tetrazolium chloride. AMPK activity was assayed using the SAMS peptide. The expression of arginase I, NF-kappaB p65, and hypoxia-inducible factor-1 alpha (HIF-1 alpha) was evaluated using Western blot. Compound C displayed ambivalent effect depending on microglia basal activity. It up-regulated the release of TNF alpha and NO production and increased the expression of arginase I in non-stimulated microglia. However, compound C down-regulated IL-1 beta, IL-6 and TNF alpha release, NO, ROS production, and AMPK activity, diminished NF-kappaB and HIF-1 alpha expression, as well as increased arginase I expression in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated microglia. Compound C did not affect iNOS expression and IL-10 and TGF-beta release in non-stimulated and LPS-stimulated microglia. The observed alterations in the release or production of inflammatory mediators may be explained by the changes in NF-kappaB, HIF-1 alpha, and arginase I expression and 3-(4,5-dimethylthazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolinum bromide values in response to LPS, whereas the basis for the compound C effect on non-stimulated microglia remains to be investigated.


Review for Dorsomorphin (Compound C)

Average Rating: 5 ★★★★★ (Based on Reviews and 11 reference(s) in Google Scholar.)

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