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Engineering yeast cells for drug discovery

Abstract

Drugs directed to the central nervous system frequently fail in clinical trials because of their poor transport into the brain. This is due to the inefficient import of drugs though the blood brain barrier. In this project, we aim to use the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a platform for studying the transport of chemicals into and out of cells. We will construct yeast strains with deletions of pairs of genes expressing of each of the 121 non-essential plasma membrane transporters, and use these in high-throughput screens to identify groups of proteins with overlapping substrate specificities as well as to define chemical groups preferentially using that particular import route. We will construct yeast strains where the native ergosterol synthesis pathway is replaced for a synthetic human cholesterol synthesis pathway. We have promising preliminary results indicating that strains with cholesterol in their plasma membranes have the ability to efficiently incorporate human trans-membrane proteins. Therefore, strains with a humanized plasma membrane can be hosts for the heterologous expression of blood-brain barrier transporters. Thus, they will be used in screening to identify chemical groups preferably imported by each route, facilitating efficient design of drugs directed to the central nervous system. The humanized strains may also be used in the search for inhibitors of cholesterol synthesis, and for large-scale expression of trans-membrane proteins for structural and functional studies. (AU)

Articles published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the research grant:
Antimicrobiano usado em cosméticos pode ser opção contra a malária  
Antimicrobial used in toiletries could become option against malaria 
Un antimicrobiano utilizado en cosméticos puede ser una opción contra la malaria 
Articles published in other media outlets (2 total):
Brightsurf: Açaí berry extracts fight malaria in mice (16/Oct/2019)
7thSpace: Açaí berry extracts fight malaria in mice (16/Oct/2019)

Scientific publications (5)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
SILVA, SUELEN FERNANDES; KLIPPEL, ANGELICA HOLLUNDER; RAMOS, PRISCILA ZONZINI; SANTIAGO, ANDREE DA SILVA; VALENTINI, SANDRO ROBERTO; BENGTSON, MARIO HENRIQUE; MASSIRER, KATLIN BRAUER; BILSLAND, ELIZABETH; COUNAGO, RAFAEL MIGUEZ; ZANELLI, CLESLEI FERNANDO. Structural features and development of an assay platform of the parasite target deoxyhypusine synthase of Brugia malayi and Leishmania major. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, v. 14, n. 10 OCT 2020. Web of Science Citations: 1.
FERREIRA, LETICIA TIBURCIO; RODRIGUES, JULIANA; CASSIANO, GUSTAVO CAPATTI; TAVELLA, TATYANA ALMEIDA; PERALIS TOMAZ, KAIRA CRISTINA; BAIA-DA-SILVA, DJANE CLARYS; SOUZA, MACEJANE FERREIRA; DO NASCIMENTO LIMA, MARILIA NUNES; MOTTIN, MELINA; ALMEIDA, LUDIMILA DIAS; CALIT, JULIANA; SILVA DE BARROS PUCA, MARIA CAROLINA; MELO, GISELY CARDOSO; BARGIERI, DANIEL YOUSSEF; PINTO LOPES, STEFANIE COSTA; GUIMARAES LACERDA, MARCUS VINICIUS; BILSLAND, ELIZABETH; SUNNERHAGEN, PER; NEVES, BRUNO JUNIOR; ANDRADE, CAROLINA HORTA; LEMOS CRAVO, PEDRO VITOR; MARANHAO COSTA, FABIO TRINDADE. Computational Chemogenomics Drug Repositioning Strategy Enables the Discovery of Epirubicin as a New Repurposed Hit for Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, v. 64, n. 9 SEP 2020. Web of Science Citations: 1.
FERREIRA, LETICIA T.; VENANCIO, VINICIUS P.; KAWANO, TAILA; ABRAO, LAILAH C. C.; TAVELLA, TATYANA A.; ALMEIDA, LUDIMILA D.; PIRES, GABRIEL S.; BILSLAND, ELIZABETH; SUNNERHAGEN, PER; AZEVEDO, LUCIANA; TALCOTT, STEPHEN T.; MERTENS-TALCOTT, SUSANNE U.; COSTA, FABIO T. M. Chemical Genomic Profiling Unveils the in Vitro and in Vivo Antiplasmodial Mechanism of Acai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) Polyphenols. ACS OMEGA, v. 4, n. 13, p. 15628-15635, SEP 24 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
BILSLAND, ELIZABETH; TAVELLA, TATYANA A.; KROGH, RENATA; STOKES, JAMIE E.; ROBERTS, ANNABELLE; AJIOKA, JAMES; SPRING, DAVID R.; ANDRICOPULO, ADRIANO D.; COSTA, FABIO T. M.; OLIVER, STEPHEN G. Antiplasmodial and trypanocidal activity of violacein and deoxyviolacein produced from synthetic operons. BMC Biotechnology, v. 18, APR 11 2018. Web of Science Citations: 2.
BILSLAND, ELIZABETH; VAN VLIET, LIISA; WILLIAMS, KEVIN; FELTHAM, JACK; CARRASCO, MARTA P.; FOTORAN, WESLEY L.; CUBILLOS, ELIANA F. G.; WUNDERLICH, GERHARD; GROTLI, MORTEN; HOLLFELDER, FLORIAN; JACKSON, VICTORIA; KING, ROSS D.; OLIVER, STEPHEN G. Plasmodium dihydrofolate reductase is a second enzyme target for the antimalarial action of triclosan. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, v. 8, JAN 18 2018. Web of Science Citations: 6.

Please report errors in scientific publications list by writing to: cdi@fapesp.br.