Drug Discovery for Kinetoplastid Diseases: Future Directions

Kinetoplastid parasites have caused human disease for millennia. Significant achievements have been made toward developing new treatments for leishmaniasis (particularly on the Indian subcontinent) and for human African trypanosomiasis (HAT). Moreover, the sustained decrease in the incidence of HAT has made the prospect of elimination a tantalizing reality. Despite the gains, no new chemical or biological entities to treat kinetoplastid diseases have been registered in more than three decades, and more work is needed to discover safe and effective therapies for patients with Chagas disease and leishmaniasis. Advances in tools for drug discovery and novel insights into the biology of the host–parasite interaction may provide opportunities for accelerated progress. Here, we summarize the output from a gathering of scientists and physicians who met to discuss the current status and future directions in drug discovery for kinetoplastid diseases.

Srinivasa P. S. Rao, Michael P. Barrett, Glenn Dranoff, Christopher J. Faraday, Claudio R. Gimpelewicz, Asrat Hailu, Catherine L. Jones, John M. Kelly, Janis K. Lazdins-Helds, Pascal Mäser, Jose Mengel, Jeremy C. Mottram, Charles E. Mowbray, David L. Sacks, Phillip Scott &, Gerald F. Späth, Rick L. Tarleton, Jonathan M. Spector, and Thierry T. Diagana. 2018. ACS Infectious Diseases. https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsinfecdis.8b00298

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