May 2, 2014

A Quantum Similarity Approach for the Discovery of Anti-Trypanosome Drug Leads

The project is supported by a Phase I SBIR grant award from the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (1R43AI114078-01).
The experimental work will be subcontracted to the laboratory of Dr. Kojo Mensa-Wilmot at the University of Georgia.

Project Narrative:
Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) or 'sleeping sickness' is a neglected tropical disease caused by the parasite Trypanosoma brucei. Here, we propose to apply a quantum-similarity approach to discover novel inhibitors of T. Brucei. Quantum similarity takes modeling of bio-molecular interactions a step further and uses first principles of quantum theory alone to describe the whole system rather than just the central part. This allows for simultaneous interrogation of multiple targets and pathways, and incorporation of various pharmacological requirements early in the drug discovery process, thus increasing the chances of finding novel therapeutics to reduce CNS invasion and ameliorate immune mediated pathology in this parasitic CNS infection.