Every week, articles disclosing new antifungal leads reported as promising starting points for optimization projects are published. In many cases, the mechanism that accounts for their antifungal activity has not been fully elucidated. More significantly, the detrimental impact that could result from certain embedded chemical features has been underestimated or even overlooked. In the course of our research in the agrochemical area, we have concluded that in many cases such leads are actually nonoptimizable because they either contain what are now recognized as pan assay interference compounds (PAINS) or other promiscuous groups. This article is aimed at highlighting the pitfalls we have encountered and hopefully to steer other research groups away from them.
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