Our research focuses on developing innovative tools to combat infectious diseases and we are currently involved in three different research programs:
With the emergence of resistant M. tuberculosis strains, co-infection with HIV, and the existence of latent tuberculosis infections, our medicinal chemistry program aims at identifying new anti-TB drugs that target both drug-susceptible and drug-resistant M. tuberculosis strains, that are compatible with ART and kill the bug in its different physiological states, including latent ones.
Despite substantial progress in the field, malaria remains a global health issue and currently available control strategies are not sufficient to achieve eradication, Therefore, there is an imperative need to enrich the drug discovery pipeline, preferably with curative compounds that can also act prophylactically. Agents able to prevent transmission are likely to have a strong impact on malaria. Our medicinal chemistry campaign aims at identifying novel drugs targeting sexual stages of Plasmodium and innovative methods to target malaria transmission from host to vector, and vice versa.
Coxsackievirus A9 (CVA9) and Coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3) are both serotypes belonging to the enterovirus B species. Although CVA9 infection often leads to mild symptoms, it has also been the cause of a meningitis outbreak as well as found to cause hepatitis. CVB3 in turn is more associated with myocarditis, pancreatitis and meningitis, with the infection having been observed to be particularly prevalent in the heart and pancreas. Besides vaccines, development of effective antivirals is the only alternative. Therefore, further efforts are needed to develop novel antivirals, and our medicinal chemistry program aims at designing new and potent phenylbenzamides, identified through a screening of an in-house library of 201 compounds of diverse chemical scaffolds against CVA9 and CVB3.