Washington: A new study has shed light on the nature of the enzymes required for vitamin biosynthesis by the malaria causing pathogen Plasmodium, which could eventually lead to the design of more effective drugs to combat the disease.Vitamins are essential nutrients required in small amounts, the lack of which leads to deficiencies.Many pathogenic microorganisms produce vitamins, and these biosynthetic pathways may provide suitable targets for development of new drugs.Indeed antifolates targeting vitamin B9 biosynthesis of the malarial parasites have been proven valuable chemotherapeutics for the treatment of malaria, one of the most devastating infectious diseases leading to nearly 250 million cases worldwide and about 1 million deaths annually.Vitamin B6 biosynthesis of the parasite has been discussed as a drug novel target.A major factor hindering malaria control is the high degree of resistance developed by Plasmodium species against currently available drugs. Hence, there is still an urgent need for the identification of novel drug targets as well as antimalarial chemotherapeutics.
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