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Study suggests malaria discovery may accelerate antiviral treatment for Kovid-19

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Washington: A study outlines a strategy that could save millions of dollars in drug discovery research and drug development by remodeling existing treatments designed for other diseases such as cancer. The study reported that the parasites that cause malaria are heavily dependent on enzymes in red blood cells, where the parasites hide and spread.
This approach shows so much promise that it has received government money for its potential application in the fight against Kovid-19. The study, published in Nature Communications, was conducted by an international team and led by Professor Christian Dorig of RMIT University.
It has also been shown that drugs developed for cancer, and which inactivate these human enzymes, known as protein kinases, are highly effective in killing parasites and represent alternatives to drugs that Target the parasite.
Lead author, Dr. of RMIT Jack Adderley said the analysis revealed which host cell enzymes were active during infection, revealing novel points of parasite’s dependence on its human host.
“This approach has the potential to significantly reduce costs and accelerate the deployment of new and urgently needed avalanches,” he said.
“These host enzymes are in many instances active in cancer cells, so now we can jump back on the current cancer drug discovery and look to reuse a drug that is already available or in the drug development process. Is nearing completion. ”
Along with enabling the resurgence of drugs, the approach is likely to reduce the emergence of drug resistance, as the pathogen cannot simply avoid mutating the drug target, as is the case for currently available antimalarials.
Doerig, Associate Dean for the Biomedical Sciences Cluster at RMIT and senior author of the paper, said the findings were exciting, because not only in the case of malaria, but with most infectious agents, drug resistance is one of the biggest challenges in modern health services Is one of Including a large number of highly pathogenic bacterial species.
He said, “If we do not solve this resistance problem, we are at risk of returning before the antibiotic era, which is a clear and present threat to global public health. We need innovative ways to address this issue Is required, ”he said.
“By targeting the host and not the pathogen, we mutate the target of the drug to make the possibility increasingly resistant to the pathogen, since the target is made by the human host, not the pathogen.”
Dierig’s team will now collaborate with the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity (Doherty Institute) to investigate potential COVID-19 therapies using this approach, in partnership with the Bio Capital Impact Fund (BCIF), Victorian Medical Research Supported by funding from the Acceleration Fund. .
The co-investigator on the grant, Dr. Julian Druce of the Royal Melbourne Hospital, from the Victorian Infectious Disease Reference Laboratory (VIDRL) ​​at the Doherty Institute, was part of the team that developed and shared the virus that previously caused COVID-19 was for. Research was an important contributor to efforts to defeat the epidemic.
The approach developed by the RMIT team was truly exciting, said Professor Peter Reville of the Royal Melbourne Hospital, senior medical scientist at the Doherty Institute and a leader on hepatitis B research.
“It has proven successful for other human pathogens, including malaria and hepatitis C virus and has very real potential to be used to discover novel drug targets for hepatitis B and Kovid-19,” he said.


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