Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


UBC formulation of leishmaniasis drug shown to be stable, effective in tropical temperatures

A new formulation of Amphotericin B (AmB) developed by University of British Columbia researchers has been shown to be stable in tropical climates and effective in treating Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL) in mouse models.

VL is a blood-born parasitic disease that afflicts 12 million people worldwide, mainly in developing countries and tropical regions. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 1.5 million new cases of the disease are reported every year, and 60,000 people die from it.

AmB, a 50-year-old anti-fungal drug, is the standard treatment for VL, but its current formulation requires intravenous administration and constant refrigeration, making it costly and challenging to deliver in tropical regions, where VL takes the heaviest toll.

A lipid-based formulation, co-developed by UBC Pharmaceutical Sciences Professor Kishor Wasan and Adjunct Professor Ellen Wasan, allows the drug to be taken orally. It was licensed to Vancouver-based iCo Therapeutics in 2008. As part of the licensing agreement, and in accordance with UBC's Global Access principles, iCo Therapeutics agrees to provide the drug at subsidized costs to developing countries for the treatment of VL.

A new study published today in the online journal PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases shows that the formulation, called iCo-010, is stable in WHO Climate Zones 3 and 4 (30-43 degrees Celsius) and is efficacious in treating mice with VL.

"In most places where VL is a problem, there is little infrastructure for refrigeration of drug products," says Kishor Wasan, Distinguished University Scholar and co-author of the study. "Now we've shown for the first time this lipid-based formulation can stand up to the harsh conditions of the tropical climate and is effective in animal models when taken orally."

"The development of this thermally stable and efficacious oral formulation brings us one step closer to helping people in remote areas of India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sudan, where VL is a serious problem," says Ellen Wasan, lead author of the PLoS-NTD paper. Ellen Wasan is an adjunct professor at UBC's Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences and a faculty member at the British Columbia Institute of Technology.

The AmB oral formulation is a founding project of the Neglected Global Diseases Initiative (NGDI) at UBC and is funded by the Consortium for Parasitic Drug Development, a grantee of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Since its launch in 2009, NGDI-associated researchers have received more than $9 million in funding for projects aimed at improving health outcomes for the world's poorest people.

The Neglected Global Diseases Initiative at UBC (NGDI-UBC) aims to bring together the technical expertise and perspectives of a variety of disciplines at UBC – including bench science, pharmaceutical and health research, business, social policy, and law – to develop interventions for neglected global diseases and ensure their delivery to those in need. For more information, visit

Brian Lin | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Diagnoses: When Are Several Opinions Better Than One?
19.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Greater Range and Longer Lifetime

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VDI presents International Bionic Award of the Schauenburg Foundation

26.10.2016 | Awards Funding

3-D-printed magnets

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

More VideoLinks >>>