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Screening of chemical compound libraries identified new anti-Toxoplasma gondii agents

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Toxoplasma gondii is the etiological agent of toxoplasmosis, a common parasitic disease that affects nearly one-third of the human population. The primary infection can be asymptomatic in healthy individuals but may prove fatal in immunocompromised individuals. Available treatment options for toxoplasmosis patients are limited, underscoring the urgent need to identify and develop new therapies. Non-biased screening of libraries of chemical compounds including the repurposing of well-characterized compounds is emerging as viable approach to achieving this goal. In the present investigation, we screened libraries of natural product and FDA-approved compounds to identify those that inhibited T. gondii growth. We identified 32 new compounds that potently inhibit T. gondii growth. Our findings are new and promising, and further strengthen the prospects of drug repurposing as well as the screening of a wide range of chemical compounds as a viable source of alternative anti-parasitic therapeutic agents.

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This research was funded through a JSPS Fellowship to Dr. Adeyemi. The study was supported by grants-in-aid for Scientific Research, Scientific Research on Innovative Areas (3308 and 3407) from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science, Sports, and Technology (MEXT) of Japan and by the Ito Foundation. The Natural Products Compound Library and the FDA-approved Compound Library were provided by the Cancer Research Institute of Kanazawa University.

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Correspondence to Kentaro Kato.

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The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

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Section Editor: Dana Mordue

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Adeyemi, O.S., Sugi, T., Han, Y. et al. Screening of chemical compound libraries identified new anti-Toxoplasma gondii agents. Parasitol Res 117, 355–363 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00436-017-5698-1

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  • Anti-parasitic
  • Drug discovery
  • FDA-approved compounds
  • Natural products
  • Toxoplasmosis