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Computational studies on Plasmodium falciparum N-myristoyltransferase enzyme and its inhibitors as antimalarial drug candidates

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Mariana Lopes Garcia
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Master's Dissertation
Press: São Carlos.
Institution: Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Instituto de Física de São Carlos (IFSC/BT)
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Rafael Victório Carvalho Guido; Artur Torres Cordeiro; Gustavo Henrique Goulart Trossini
Advisor: Rafael Victório Carvalho Guido

Malaria is an infectious disease caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Plasmodium and transmitted by Anopheles spp. mosquitos. Due to the emerging resistance to current available drugs, great efforts for new molecular target and drugs are required. Recently, N-myristoyltransferase (NMT) was confirmed as an essential enzyme to malaria parasites and validated as a chemically tractable target for the development of new drug candidates against malaria. This work aimed to shed light on the molecular requirements underlying the inhibitory activity of benzothiophene derivatives against NMT. Therefore, 2D and 3D quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) studies were developed for two datasets of benzothiophene derivatives as P. falciparum NMT (PfNMT) and the human homologue (HsNMT) inhibitors. Also, homology modeling studies for PfNMT were developed. The 2D QSAR studies were developed by the Hologram QSAR (HQSAR) method. The PfNMT structural model was applied in the construction of 3D QSAR models CoMFA (Comparative Molecular Field Analysis) and CoMSIA (Comparative Molecular Similarity Index Analysis). Different molecular alignment (maximum common substructure, flexible alignment and structure based) and atomic partial charge calculation (Gasteiger-Hückel, MMFF94, AM1-BCC, CHELPG and Mulliken) methods were used to build the 3D QSAR models. The best models showed internal consistency and high predictive ability of biological activity against PfNMT. The contribution and contour maps gave important information about compounds structure-activity relationship. The results allowed the identification of the molecular requirements underlying the inhibitory activity and should be useful for the design of novel potent and selective PfNMT inhibitors as antimalarial drug candidates. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 15/21272-4 - Computational studies on N-myristoyltransferase enzyme from Plasmodium falciparum and its inhibitors as antimalarial agents
Grantee:Mariana Lopes Garcia
Support Opportunities: Scholarships in Brazil - Master