• Target disease: Visceral leishmaniasis (VL)
  • Main Partners (since project start): Celgene Corporation, USA; Laboratory of Microbiology, Parasitology and Hygiene, University of Antwerp, Belgium; London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK; Sandexis, UK; WuXi AppTech, China.
  • Project start: 2015
  • Funding (since project start): Department for International Development (DFID), UK; Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (DGIS), the Netherlands; Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF through KfW), Germany; Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors without Borders, International.
  • Project status: Completed


Overall Objective: 

  • Select a pre‑clinical candidate from the CGH VL series for the treatment of visceral leishmaniasis


A novel series of heterocyclic compounds for visceral leishmaniasis was optimized by Celgene in collaboration with London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Advinus, and with advice from DNDi. In 2016, an in vivo proof-of-concept was achieved for this series.

In 2018, because of poor pharmacokinetics and a lack of safety margins following extensive exploration, the decision was made to stop this series. A new screen has begun with a new sub-set of the Celgene library of compounds with the goal to identify novel lead series.


Last update: February 2019