StemMACS™ Purmorphamine is a small molecule activator of hedgehog signaling.

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Chemical structure of StemMACS™ Purmorphamine
Chemical structure of StemMACS™ Purmorphamine

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StemMACS™ Purmorphamine is a small molecule activator of hedgehog signaling.

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Background information

StemMACS™ Purmorphamine is a small molecule that activates the Hedgehog signaling pathway by binding to the smoothened receptor (IC50 ~ 1.5 μM). Binding is competitive with respect to the smoothened antagonist cyclopamine. Purmorphamine has been used instead of sonic hedgehog for motor neuron differentiation and can promote osteogenesis in mesenchymal progenitor cells.


Published applications for Purmorphamine include:
  • Activation of Hedgehog signaling1
  • Motor neuron differentiation from pluripotent stem cells2,3
  • Osteoblast differentiation from mesenchymal progenitors4,5,6
  • Adipocyte differentiation from mesenchymal progenitors7

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References for StemMACS™ Purmorphamine


  1. Sinha, S. et al. (2006) Purmorphamine activates the Hedgehog pathway by targeting Smoothened. Nat. Chem. Biol. 2(1): 29-30
  2. Li, X. J. et al. (2008) Directed differentiation of ventral spinal progenitors and motor neurons from human embryonic stem cells by small molecules. Stem Cells 26(4): 886-893
  3. Hu, B. Y. and Zhang, S.-C. et al. (2009) Differentiation of spinal motor neurons from pluripotent human stem cells. Nat. Protoc. 4(9): 1295-1304
  4. Beloti et al. (2005) Int J Cell Biol 29(7): 537-541
  5. Wu, X. et al. (2002) A small molecule with osteogenesis-inducing activity in multipotent mesenchymal progenitor cells. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 124: 14520-14521
  6. Wu, X. et al. (2004) Purmorphamine induces osteogenesis by activation of the hedgehog signaling pathway. Chem. Biol. 11: 1229-1238
  7. Fontaine, C. et al. (2008) Hedgehog signaling alters adipocyte maturation of human mesenchymal stem cells. Stem Cells 26(4): 1037-1046

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