Apicomplexa, Trypanosoma and Parasitic Nematode Protein Kinases As Antiparasitic Therapeutic Targets

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Parasitic infections caused by Plasmodium, Trypanosoma, Leishmania, Toxoplasma and parasitic nematodes affect hundreds of millions of individuals worldwide and are the cause of significant mortality and morbidity, particularly in developing countries. These diseases also have an impact on individuals from developed countries; for example, some US troops in Iraq and Afghanistan have been infected with Leishmania. The annual mortality associated with parasitic infections is estimated to be 1.5 million deaths. The socioeconomic impact of the morbidity associated with parasitic infections is significant, and the development of new drugs, aimed at novel targets, is urgently needed to develop effective treatments for these diseases. The small-molecule inhibitors discussed in this review constitute useful tools with which to explore the relevance of kinase inhibition in inducing antiparasitic activity. The aim of recent target-based approaches used in the development of parasite kinase inhibitors is to identify novel antiparasitic agents with therapeutic potential.

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