Researchers have developed a new antifungal molecule by modifying an existing drug called Amphotericin B. AmB is a strong antifungal drug but is toxic to the kidneys. The new molecule is designed to be just as effective against fungi but without the same toxicity.
Dr. Martin D. Burke, a professor at the University of Illinois, led this research. This work aims to address the growing problem of fungal infections and create a powerful tool to combat them.
The research team studied how AmB kills fungi and realized it can also harm human kidney cells by extracting cholesterol. With this knowledge, they modified AmB’s structure to make it less toxic to the kidneys.
The new molecule, called AM-2-19, showed promise in laboratory tests in terms of effectiveness and kidney-sparing. It also demonstrated high efficacy in mice models of fungal infections.
Sfunga Therapeutics has licensed this new molecule and is conducting clinical trials. The National Institutes of Health supported this work, and the researchers also received assistance from other institutions.
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