Advanced search
Start date
Betweenand

Identifying protein kinase inhibitors as antimalarial agents using chemogenomic, bioinfomatics and phenotypic strategies: focus in Plasmodium vivax

Grant number: 18/13571-0
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): September 25, 2018
Effective date (End): September 24, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Parasitology
Principal Investigator:Fabio Trindade Maranhão Costa
Grantee:Gustavo Capatti Cassiano
Supervisor abroad: Pedro Vitor Lemos Cravo
Home Institution: Instituto de Biologia (IB). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal  
Associated to the scholarship:15/20774-6 - Identifying protein kinase inhibitors as antimalarial agents using chemogenomic, bioinfomatics and phenotypic strategies: focus in Plasmodium vivax, BP.PD

Abstract

Malaria is one of the most important public health problems in tropical and subtropical areas, with approximately 200 million cases worldwide annually. In Brazil, P. vivax is the most prevalent species, accounting for around 85% of all cases, and reports of severe cases associated with P. vivax have been increasing in the last few years. In absence of an effective vaccine, rapid treatment is essential to malaria control. However, parasite resistance to currently available compounds highlights the urgent need for identifying new antimalarial therapies. In this context, the present project's main objective is to identify compounds against molecular targets whose inhibition may impair growth of sexual and asexual blood stages of P. vivax. At first, a comparative genomics strategy will be applied to select protein kinases that are essential for P. vivax and P. falciparum development, but absent or with low similarity in humans. Subsequently, using homology modelling and molecular docking, virtual screening will be performed in kinase inhibitor library (Biofocus). Compounds displaying in silico inhibitory potential will then be evaluated in functional assays. Initially, the compounds will be tested in in vitro assays with P. falciparum and in vivo using the experimental model of malaria P. chabaudi. Next, that compounds that display good inhibitory activity will be evaluated in ex vivo assays with P. vivax isolates from the Amazon. In conclusion, the present project could help to identify new antimalarial therapies, especially against vivax malaria.