Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


UBC researcher finds new way to treat devastating fungal infections

Devastating blood-borne fungal infections that can be lethal for HIV/AIDS, cancer, and organ transplant patients may be treated more successfully, thanks to a new drug delivery method developed by researchers at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

Pharmaceutical Sciences Prof. Kishor M. Wasan has created a liquid preparation that incorporates drug molecules in fat (lipid-based formulation) so that Amphotericin B, a potent anti-fungal agent, can be taken by mouth with minimal side effects. The agent, used for about 50 years, is currently administered intravenously and has significant toxic side effects, notably severe kidney toxicity as well as serious tissue damage at the intravenous injection site.

Wasan and his research team have discovered that the oral preparation triggers a different molecular interaction than intravenous delivery. The lipid-based system attacks fungal cells only while inhibiting the drug’s interaction with kidney cells – boosting effectiveness and dramatically reducing toxicity.

The research findings will be presented today at a meeting sponsored by the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists in Washington, D.C. Findings will be published in July 2007 in Drug Development and Industrial Pharmacy.

... more about:
»Researcher »fungal »treat

Because the oral form of the drug is easier to administer and cheaper than intravenous delivery, Wasan predicts that more patients – especially those in underserved areas and developing countries – would have access to the medicine. He notes that Amphotericin B is also used to treat Leishmaniasis, a parasitic disease that affects an estimated two million people worldwide according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCP) in the U.S.

“This research was triggered by clinicians needing a way to kill these fungal infections without risking the patient’s kidney,” says Wasan, who is a Distinguished University Scholar and a Canadian Institutes of Health Research Chair in Drug Development. “Despite antifungal agents, treating these infections is difficult and challenges researchers to find better outcomes for the patient.”

Wasan tested the drug delivery method, in animal models, against two fungal infections seen in their most severe forms in people with suppressed immune systems, such as surgical patients and those with chronic illness.

He treated Candida albicans, often seen as esophageal candidiasis, an infection prevalent in HIV/AIDS and cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, and aspergillosis, an infection caused by aspergillus fumigatis, a family of common moulds that can cause symptoms ranging from cough to brain damage. The oral formulation proved effective and minimally toxic against both infections.

A clinical study of the drug delivery system, involving 50-100 patients, is planned for later this year. A form of invasive candidiasis called candidemia is the fourth most common bloodstream infection among hospitalized patients in the U.S. A survey conducted at CDCP found that candidemia occurs in eight of every 100,000 persons per year. Persons at high risk include low-birth-weight babies and surgical patients.

Incidence of invasive aspergillosis was five-10 per 1,000, according to an analysis of medical records of 35,232 HIV-infected patients who attended outpatient clinics in 10 U.S. cities between 1990 and 1998, according to Health Canada.

Hilary Thomson | EurekAlert!
Further information:

Further reports about: Researcher fungal treat

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht North and South Cooperation to Combat Tuberculosis
22.03.2018 | Universität Zürich

nachricht Researchers Discover New Anti-Cancer Protein
22.03.2018 | Universität Basel

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Researchers Discover New Anti-Cancer Protein

An international team of researchers has discovered a new anti-cancer protein. The protein, called LHPP, prevents the uncontrolled proliferation of cancer cells in the liver. The researchers led by Prof. Michael N. Hall from the Biozentrum, University of Basel, report in “Nature” that LHPP can also serve as a biomarker for the diagnosis and prognosis of liver cancer.

The incidence of liver cancer, also known as hepatocellular carcinoma, is steadily increasing. In the last twenty years, the number of cases has almost doubled...

Im Focus: Researchers at Fraunhofer monitor re-entry of Chinese space station Tiangong-1

In just a few weeks from now, the Chinese space station Tiangong-1 will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere where it will to a large extent burn up. It is possible that some debris will reach the Earth's surface. Tiangong-1 is orbiting the Earth uncontrolled at a speed of approx. 29,000 km/h.Currently the prognosis relating to the time of impact currently lies within a window of several days. The scientists at Fraunhofer FHR have already been monitoring Tiangong-1 for a number of weeks with their TIRA system, one of the most powerful space observation radars in the world, with a view to supporting the German Space Situational Awareness Center and the ESA with their re-entry forecasts.

Following the loss of radio contact with Tiangong-1 in 2016 and due to the low orbital height, it is now inevitable that the Chinese space station will...

Im Focus: Alliance „OLED Licht Forum“ – Key partner for OLED lighting solutions

Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, provider of research and development services for OLED lighting solutions, announces the founding of the “OLED Licht Forum” and presents latest OLED design and lighting solutions during light+building, from March 18th – 23rd, 2018 in Frankfurt a.M./Germany, at booth no. F91 in Hall 4.0.

They are united in their passion for OLED (organic light emitting diodes) lighting with all of its unique facets and application possibilities. Thus experts in...

Im Focus: Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

Oceans formed before Tharsis and evolved together, shaping climate history of Mars

A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...

Im Focus: Tiny implants for cells are functional in vivo

For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.

In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

Virtual reality conference comes to Reutlingen

19.03.2018 | Event News

Ultrafast Wireless and Chip Design at the DATE Conference in Dresden

16.03.2018 | Event News

International Tinnitus Conference of the Tinnitus Research Initiative in Regensburg

13.03.2018 | Event News

Latest News

Modular safety concept increases flexibility in plant conversion

22.03.2018 | Trade Fair News

New interactive map shows climate change everywhere in world

22.03.2018 | Earth Sciences

New technologies and computing power to help strengthen population data

22.03.2018 | Earth Sciences

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>