Leishmania major is an important trypanosomatid pathogen that causes leishmaniasis, which is a serious disease in much of the Old World. Current treatments include a small number of antimony compounds that, while somewhat effective, are limited by serious side effects. We have screened a small portion of a unique chemical library and have found at least three novel compounds that are effective against L. tarentolae and L. major in vitro and in a murine macrophage model of L. major infection. These compounds were effective in both assays at doses significantly lower than those of sodium stibogluconate (Pentostam) and represent possible candidates for drug development.
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