Chemical compounds that can help cure sleeping sickness found

A recent research has helped scientists find hundreds of chemical compounds that could prove beneficial in curing the deadly disease known as sleeping sickness or African trypanosomiasis.

Updated: Oct 26, 2014, 15:41 PM IST
Chemical compounds that can help cure sleeping sickness found

Zee Media Bureau

Washington: A recent research has helped scientists find hundreds of chemical compounds that could prove beneficial in curing the deadly disease known as sleeping sickness or African trypanosomiasis.

Michael Pollastri, who runs Northeastern's Laboratory for Neglected Disease Drug Discovery, and co-collaborators at the Spanish National Research Council for Scientific Research worked with global healthcare company GlaxoSmithKline to screen and test more than 42,000 chemical compounds against the parasites that cause sleeping sickness.

In a paper, researchers have reported that they identified nearly 800 compounds that represent good options for early drug discovery.

Sleeping sickness is one of the World Health Organization's 17 neglected tropical diseases. It has been found only in sub Sahara Africa and infects between 10,000 and 30,000 people annually.

The next step would involve continued testing on these promising 800 compounds and determining which ones could be tweaked in order to have the right potency, properties and lack of toxicity to treat the disease. At that point, they might be able to advance a compound toward clinical trials for sleeping sickness.

The study is published in the journal PLOS.

With Agency Inputs