Small Molecule Inhibitors to Potentially Treat and Prevent Transmission of Malaria and Chagas Disease

Tech ID: 23664 / UC Case 2013-939-0


Researchers at the University of California, Davis have discovered small molecules to potentially treat malaria and Chagas disease as well as prevent transmission of these diseases.

Full Description

Standard treatment for malaria, Chagas disease and other infectious diseases is the prophylactic use of antibiotics that target the arthropod-borne parasite. Although effective in treating the infected host, it does not prevent the transmission of the parasites and the wide spread use of prophylactics has led to an increase in drug resistant infective parasites. This, in turn, has limited the effectiveness of currently available prophylactics and lead to an increase in risk for transmission of the disease.

Researchers at the University of California, Davis have discovered small molecule inhibitors to potentially treat and prevent transmission of malaria and Chagas disease. This method has been successfully tested in mammalian cells at risk of exposure to an arthropod-borne parasite and parasitic blood meals to show efficacy against parasite infection and inhibiting disease transmission. Additionally, since the inhibitors target highly conserved regions found in mammals and arthropod hosts, drug resistance risk of the parasite for malaria and Chagas disease is significantly reduced.


  • Treatment of infectious diseases with reduced risk for transmission and drug resistant arthropod-borne parasites
    • Malaria
    • Chagas Disease


  • Reduces severity and potentially treats malaria and Chagas disease
  • Uses commercially available small molecule inhibitors
  • Can be used in combination with existing anti-malarial, anti-Chagas disease drugs
  • Targets highly conserved protein in mammalian and arthropod hosts
  • Effective against parasite infection in human host and transmission of parasites
    • Reduces risk of transmission and potential of drug resistance
    • Does not target parasite physiology directly, maintain effectiveness

Patent Status

Country Type Number Dated Case
United States Of America Issued Patent 9,918,989 03/20/2018 2013-939


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  • Giulivi, Cecilia
  • Luckhart, Shirley

Other Information


malaria, mosquito, anti-malarial, parasite, small molecule inhibitor, Chagas disease, arthropod, infectious disease, drug resistance, mosquito bite, parasitic protozoan, American trypanosomiasis, trypanosoma cruzi, T. cruzi, kissing bugs, blood, endemic area, vector borne transmission, host transmission, treatment

Categorized As