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Therapeutic inhibition of P. aeruginosa nitrogen respiration in chronic infection

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 1R41AI118120-01A1
Agency Tracking Number: R41AI118120
Amount: $300,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: NIAID
Solicitation Number: PA15-270
Solicitation Year: 2015
Award Year: 2016
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2016-07-15
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2018-06-30
Small Business Information
New Haven, CT 06511-6662
United States
DUNS: 142406110
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 (203) 737-5062
Business Contact
Phone: (203) 494-5288
Research Institution

DESCRIPTION provided by applicant The goal of this STTR is to identify novel small molecule compounds targeting the nitrogen respiration pathway of Pseudomonas aeruginosa This pathway is crucial to the pathogenesis of P aeruginosa in vivo but has not yet been exploited for antimicrobial drug discovery There is a clear need for new treatments to combat P aeruginosa infections Antibiotic resistance is exhibited by most clinical isolates and has a marked negative impact on our ability to treat and cure such infections in patients In addition hospital acquired multi drug resistant Gram negative infections are estimated to increase per patient costs andgt $ Our preliminary results show that genetic or chemical inhibition of nitrogen respiration in P aeruginosa prevents anaerobic growth limits biofilm formation and decreases fitness of P aeruginosa in murine models of pulmonary infection indicating the potential of small molecule inhibitors of nitrogen respiration as strong candidates for a new type of antimicrobial agent In addition our preliminary analysis of the crystal structure of the Escherichia coli nitrate reductase NAR which has high sequence homology to the not yet crystallized P aeruginosa enzyme suggests opportunities for small molecule binding and inhibition We have developed a whole organism high throughput screening assay that measures inhibition of nitrogen respiration We plan to screen compounds from libraries at the ICCB facility at Harvard Medical School in this Phase I project Control assays will be performed to exclude false positives Our team of chemists will analyze data from the screen to identify and prioritize hits with drug development potential Hits will be purchased and or resynthesized for follow up studies to confirm inhibition of anaerobic growth and positive hits will then be screened for inhibition of biofilm formation Compounds will also be screened for cytotoxicity in human cell lines At the end of this Phase I project we expect to have or lead compound series to move forward into further drug development i e increasing potency selectivity and drug like properties in a Phase II proposal

PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE Pseudomonas aeruginosa leads to chronic infections that are resistant to many antibiotic treatments The goal of this STTR project is to develop a new class of small molecule therapeutics for P aeruginosa that targets the nitrogen respiration pathway a novel mechanism of action not currently exploited by commercially available drugs and therefore expected to be effective against drug resistant P aeruginosa infections

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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