- Target disease: Visceral leishmaniasis
- Main partners (since project start): AbbVie, USA; AstraZeneca, UK; Centre for Drug Candidate Optimization, Monash University, Australia; Drug Discovery Unit, University of Dundee, UK; Epichem, Australia; Griffith Institute for Drug Discovery (formerly Eskitis Institute for Cell and Molecular Therapies), Griffith University, Australia; Eisai Co Ltd, Japan; Institut Pasteur Korea, South Korea; Fundaçao de Apoio Universidade Federale de Sao Paolo, Brazil; GlaxoSmithKline, Spain; Instituto de Física, Universidade de São Paulo (USP), Brazil; Laboratory of Microbiology, Parasitology and Hygiene, University of Antwerp, Belgium; London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK; Merck, USA; Pfitzer (formerly Anacor Pharmaceuticals), UK; Sanofi, France; Shionogi & Co Ltd, Japan; Sandexis, UK; Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Ltd, Japan; TCG Lifesciences, India; The Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Switzerland; Universidade Estadual de Campinas, UNICAMP, Brazil; WuXi AppTech, China.
- Project start: Ongoing
- Funding (since project start): Department for International Development (DFID), UK; Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors without Borders, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (DGIS), The Netherlands; Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF through KfW).
Hit-to-lead is a dynamic phase in the drug discovery cascade in which small molecule hits from high throughput screens are evaluated and undergo optimization to identify promising lead compounds.
The process of hit-to-lead optimization is ongoing with multiple series from several pharmaceutical companies and with hits from libraries purchased from commercial vendors and screened by DNDi to be advanced if promising activity can be shown in pre-clinical models.
A number of pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies have been conducted in animal models of VL using existing and experimental drugs to build improved PK/PD models and ameliorate the translation of new drugs from discovery into clinical studies.
Last update: August 2018