Old and new targets for innovative antimalarial compounds: the different strategies of the Italian Malaria Network.
Basilico N., Bosisio E., Buelli F., Campiani G., Casagrande M., Castelli F., Coghi P., Corbett Y., Cortelezzi L., D'Alessandro S., Dell'Agli M., Esposito F., Fattorusso C., Fattorusso E., Finaurini S., Galli GV., Gemma S., Habluetzel A., Lucantoni L., Melato S., Monti D., Olliaro P., Omodeo-Salè F., Parapini S., Persico M., Rizzi M., Romeo S., Rossi F., Rusconi C., Sparatore A., Scafati OT., van den Bogaart E., Taramelli D., Vaiana N., Yerbanga S.
Clinical treatment-failures to affordable drugs encouraged new investigation for discovery and development of new prophylactic and therapeutic interventions against malaria. The Drug Discovery Cluster (DDcl) of the Italian Malaria Network gathers several highly integrated and complementary laboratories from different Italian Institutions to identify, synthesise, screen in vitro and in vivo new antimalarial molecules directed against the intraerythrocytic stage of P. falciparum parasites and/or with transmission blocking activity to select lead compounds for further development. Complementary research activities, both in vitro and in the clinics, aim at investigating the pathogenetic mechanisms of severe malaria anaemia and the different manifestations of the disease in malaria-HIV co-infected patients to identify new therapies and improve survival.