Tech ID: 19-045
Inventors: Dr. Bradley Smith, Dr. Miguel Morales, and Dr. Brian Gray
Date Added: August 22, 2019
A promising new drug lead from a compound displaying anti-Leishmania properties.
Leishmaniasis is a parasitic disease characterized by a spectrum of clinical manifestations ranging from ulcerative skin lesions to fatal infections. The most common forms found in humans are cutaneous leishmaniasis, which causes skin sores, and visceral leishmaniasis, which affects several internal organs (usually spleen, liver, and bone marrow). The first-line treatment for all types of leishmaniasis are intravenous pentavalent antimonials. These are highly toxic drugs that require prolonged treatment. Incidents of relapse are increasing, forcing the use of more expensive agents including amphotericin B, isethionate pentamidine, paromomycin and miltefosine 8. These second-line drugs also exhibit high toxicity and are frequently accompanied by the emergence of drug resistance. As existing therapies for leishmaniasis are inadequate, new cost-effective drugs are needed with excellent safety and low susceptibility to resistance.
Researchers at the University of Notre Dame have discovered a promising new drug lead from a compound displaying anti-Leishmania properties. The researchers have successfully utilized the selective targeting of zinc(II)-dipicolylamine (ZnDPA) to treat leishmaniasis in mice.
Technology Readiness Status
TRL 3 - Proof of Concept