New Drugs and Drug Resistance in Malaria: Molecular Genetic Analysis.
Annual rept. 1 Jun 95-31 May 96,
HARVARD UNIV CAMBRIDGE MA
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Malaria continues as a major health threat throughout the tropical world and potential demand for antimalarials is higher than for any other medication yet the world faces a crisis-drug resistance is emerging and spreading faster than drugs are being developed and the flow in the pipeline of new drugs has all but stopped. This represents a particular threat to the US Military. In a short time there may be parts of the world where no effective antimalarial drug is available. The recent emergence of multidrug resistant malaria parasites has intensified this problem. The goal of this work is to use a molecular genetic approach both in the identification of new drug targets and in the investigation of mechanisms of drug resistance. There are two parallel approaches being developed, one the development and characterization of a homologous transformation system and two the development of a heterologous expressions system in yeast for potential drug target enzymes. The yeast expression system should allow rapid screening of new drugs, greatly increasing the rate at which new antimalarials can be tested and developed. Both of these approaches are based on the functional analysis of malaria genes with goal of using this information in the identification and development of new antimalarial drugs.
- Medicine and Medical Research