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Drug development

Glaucoma treatment may counter the virulence of tuberculosis

Researchers showed ethoxzolamide, a sulfonamide and carbonic anhydrase inhibitor used to treat glaucoma and duodenal ulcers, reduced mycobacterium tuberculosis (micrograph pictured) growth in both macrophages and infected mice

Source: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

The drug, ethoxzolamide, could prevent Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria (pictured) from adapting to their environment 

Mycobacterium tuberculosis must sense and adapt to environmental cues in order to establish and maintain infection in a host. It does this in part via a signal transduction system called PhoPR.

After screening more than 200,000 compounds, US researchers have identified a drug that inhibits the PhoPR regulon, so it could be used to dampen the virulence of M. tuberculosis infection. The drug is ethoxzolamide — a sulfonamide and carbonic anhydrase inhibitor used to treat glaucoma and duodenal ulcers, and a diuretic.

Having identified the compound, the researchers then showed ethoxzolamide reduced M. tuberculosis growth in both macrophages and infected mice. “We propose that ethoxzolamide may be pursued as a new class of antivirulence therapy,” they write in Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (2015;59(8):4436–4445)[1].

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2015.20069109

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