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Bifunctional Antifungal Besets the Cell Wall, Rallies Antibodies to the Siege

07:00 EDT 13 Sep 2017 | Genetic Engineering News

A new kind of antifungal drug acts a little like a siege tower, sidling up to the fortifications of infectious organisms, encouraging otherwise reluctant combatants to join the fight. Instead of a stone wall, the antifungal drug encounters the cell wall of a fungus. Instead of archers or spearmen, the drug rallies endogenous antibodies. Ultimately, drugs of this kind, which are called antibody-recruiting molecules targeting fungi (ARM-Fs), mediate engulfment and phagocytosis of the targeted organism. The castle, swarmed by antibodies, brought to the attention of immune cells, and beset on all sides, ultimately falls. Details about the ARM-Fs appeared September 11 in the journal Angewandte Chemie , in an article entitled “Neutralization of Pathogenic Fungi with Small-Molecule Immunotherapeutics.” The article describes how a team of Yale scientists designed, synthesized, and evaluated the antifungal action of the ARM-Fs, which represent a new class of bifunctional molecule. “Our approach ...

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