Collaborations

About 14 results

Praziquantel has been the drug of choice for the treatment of schistosomiasis for over 40 years. However, it is effective only against adult worms, and the reliance on a single drug increases the risk that resistance will develop. New antischistosomals targeting multiple stages of the worms’ life cycle are needed. Dr. Conor Caffrey, Professor at the Center for Discovery and Innovation in Parasitic Diseases (CDIPD) and the Skaggs School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of California, San Diego, will investigate natural product derivatives synthesized by Dr. Peter Cheuka, Lecturer and Researcher in Medicinal Chemistry and Drug Discovery at University of Zambia. The compounds will be tested against various developmental stages of Schistosoma mansoni at CDIPD to determine bioactivity and identify interesting scaffolds for further development.

Dr. Edmund Ekuadzi, a former Novartis Next Generation Scientist (NGS) Program Fellow at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Ghana, has identified and purified a series of natural product extracts from Ghanaian plants for drug development purposes. Dr. Ekuadzi has shared a set of extracts with Dr. Conor Caffrey at University of California, San Diego (UCSD) to screen for human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) and schistosomiasis drug discovery.

Gertrude Kyere-Davies is a Master's student at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and technology (KNUST) of the University of Ghana. She was invited at University of California, San Diego (UCSD), for continuing the research initiated by her professor Christian Agyare in 2013 at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). The main purpose of her research was to screen various plant extracts and compounds against schistomes and other parasites, such as Trypanosoma cruzi, Leishmania, Trypanosoma brucei, Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba histolytica. The fellowship led to obtain hits that can be further worked on.

MSD will provide a UCSF/UCSD researcher with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (statins) to screen against schistosomal worms. CIDR will attempt to solve the structure of the S. mansoni HMG-CoA reductase.

Dr. Siqueira-Neto was interested in screening phosphodiesterase (PDE) V inhibitors for activity against kinetoplastids and schistosomes, as one compound of this class showed activity against a Trypanosoma cruzi PDE involved in osmoregulation. BVGH connected Dr. Siqueira-Neto with Eisai, which provided a select set of PDEV inhibitors for Dr. Siqueira-Neto to screen in cell-based and enzyme-based assays against Trypanosoma, Brugia, Leishmania, and Schistosoma.

Dr. Qvit was working with Dr. Mochly-Rosen to develop peptides that inhibit Leishmania-activated C kinase receptor homologue (LACK). Previous studies had shown that Leishmania LACK knockouts were nonviable, and parasites that expressed low levels of LACK were unable to infect immunocompromised mice. Dr. Qvit’s peptides had shown promise in in vitro assays, and he was interested in testing his peptides in vivo. BVGH connected Dr. Qvit with Dr. Siqueira-Neto at UCSD, who tested the peptides in his in vitro assays before he planned to test them in vivo. The compounds did not show activity in Dr. Siqueira-Neto’s in vitro assays, and he provided recommendations to Dr. Qvit for improving permeability before pursuing further testing.

Takeda provided a UCSD researcher with a targeted set of compounds to screen against Schistosoma mansoni in vitro. These screens extended the researcher’s earlier screening data to include a new chemical series targeting the same S. mansoni protein.

Eisai will provide UCSD and NEU researchers with a targeted set of inhibitors and their structures to test against Leishmania spp. and T. cruzi.

Eisai will provide a UCSD researcher with inhibitors to screen against Leishmania, T. cruzi, S. mansoni, and Brugia.

Eisai will provide UCSD researchers with two targeted sets of inhibitors to screen against S. mansoni.