The project

Because of the spread of M. tuberculosis strains multi-resistant to the drugs currently used in therapy, there is the need to have a higher number of molecules in the stages of pre-clinical and clinical development. The purpose of this project is to search for new compounds with anti-tuberculosis activity and to study their mechanisms of action and resistance. In our laboratory, we have identified the cellular target of a class of new anti-TB drugs, the benzothiazinones (BTZ). The target of BTZ is DprE1, an enzyme involved in cell wall biosynthesis, present only in bacterial cells. This drug is now in the final stage of pre-clinical development and will enter the clinical trials the next autumn.

New compounds will be tested against M. tuberculosis and the most effective ones will be selected for further analysis. More precisely, the funds raised through this campaign will be used to identify the target of a new drug, just found out and very active against multidrug-resistant strains. Finding the target means to know the mechanism of action of the drug, that is where it hits the molecule in the cell. Once identified, we can also improve the molecule and make it even more efficient.

Tuberculosis is a disease strongly increasing also due to the globalization effect, the easiness of individuals to travel the world and migration, which involves the arrival of people from areas of high tuberculosis endemicity. In addition, a recent study by the World Health Organization launched an alarming warning on antibiotic resistance: “Minor infections are likely to return to kill.” Among the infections most at risk WHO includes tuberculosis.

 


LINK

The achieved results regarding benzothiazinones have been published in SCIENCE and the article has been cited as one of the “key papers” published in 2009 (see: Nature Medicines 15:1349)
Stop TB italia
Advisory board component of : innovative medicines for tuberculosis

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Team

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Giovanna Riccardi

Full Professor of Microbiology and Head of the Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology, Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia | Founder

Giovanna Riccardi

Full Professor of Microbiology and Head of the Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology, Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia | Founder
is Full Professor of Microbiology and Head of the Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology, Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia. She was the holder of several national and international research projects, primarily associated with the issue of tuberculosis and the search for new drugs to fight it. She is currently part of the Steering Committee of the project funded by the European Commission: More Medicines for tuberculosis. She has several international collaborations. She is author of: 91 papers in international journals with referees, 4 chapters of the book, several communications to national and international conferences and two patents.
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Edda De Rossi

Associate Professor of Microbiology in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia

Edda De Rossi

Associate Professor of Microbiology in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia
is Associate Professor of Microbiology in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia. Her research focuses in the field of tuberculosis. She is author of: 41 papers in international journals with referees and several communications in national and international conferences.
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Maria Rosalia Pasca

Researcher of Microbiology in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia

Maria Rosalia Pasca

Researcher of Microbiology in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia
is Researcher of Microbiology in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia. She mainly studies the mechanisms of action of new drugs used against tuberculosis. She is author of: 39 papers in international journals with referees, 4 chapters of the book, several communications to national and international conferences and two patents.
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Laurent Roberto Chiarelli

Post-DOC researcher in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia

Laurent Roberto Chiarelli

Post-DOC researcher in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia
is a post-DOC researcher in the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia. He studies the mechanisms of action of antitubercular drugs from the biochemical point of view. He is an added value to the group for his formation in biochemistry. He is author of: 35 papers in international journals with referees, several communications in national and international.
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Giorgia Mori

PhD student in Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology at the third year, Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia

Giorgia Mori

PhD student in Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology at the third year, Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia
is a PhD student in Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology at the third year, Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia. She has always worked in the characterization of the mechanisms of action of new anti-tuberculosis drugs. She is author of: 4 papers in international journals with referees, some communications in national meetings.
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Marta Esposito

PhD students in Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology, at the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia

Marta Esposito

PhD students in Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology, at the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia
is PhD students in Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology, at the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia at the beginning with the study of tuberculosis.
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Beatrice Silvia Orena

PhD students in Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology, at the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia

Beatrice Silvia Orena

PhD students in Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology, at the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia
is PhD students in Genetics, Molecular and Cellular Biology, at the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, University of Pavia at the beginning with the study of tuberculosis.

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Contribute
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