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New Approaches to Target Tuberculosis (NATT)
Start date: 01 Oct 2008, End date: 30 Sep 2011 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"The increasing emergence of multidrug resistant strains and extensively drug resistant strains, the last one being virtually untreatable, urgently demand novel drugs for therapy of tuberculosis. This project has the aim of bringing together a number of research scientists with expertise in a broad range of disciplines, both from Europe and from India, covering the development field from chemistry to in vivo evaluation. The selected targets belong to either the group of targets from which some proof of concept already exist (mycolic acid synthesis and ATP synthase) either to the group of completely new targets that will be validated (thymidylate synthase, acyl-CoA carboxylase, DNA helicases). One alternative strategy to target the host cellular machinery to enhance bacterial killing is, likewise, included. The selected targets are covering fatty acid metabolism, nucleoside synthesis, energy generator, the survival of the microorganism in macrophages, the nucleic acids metabolism. The systems selected include those from which we expect to generate compounds active against replicating mycobacteria or to obtain compounds targeting latent infection. The application is divided in four scientific workpackages, including target validation, the interaction with the host cellular machinery, the design and synthesis of new inhibition and in vitro and in vivo screening of drug candidates and one management workpackage. A considerable part of the drug development and assessment against drug resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis will be carried out by the Indian partners, one of which is an SME."
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