am0c09075_si_001.pdf (512.04 kB)

Targeting and Inhibiting Plasmodium falciparum Using Ultra-small Gold Nanoparticles

Download (512.04 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 16.09.2020 by Silvia Varela-Aramburu, Chandradhish Ghosh, Felix Goerdeler, Patricia Priegue, Oren Moscovitz, Peter H. Seeberger
Malaria, a mosquito-borne disease caused by Plasmodium species, claims more than 400,000 lives globally each year. The increasing drug resistance of the parasite renders the development of new anti-malaria drugs necessary. Alternatively, better delivery systems for already marketed drugs could help to solve the resistance problem. Herein, we report glucose-based ultra-small gold nanoparticles (Glc-NCs) that bind to cysteine-rich domains of Plasmodium falciparum surface proteins. Microscopy shows that Glc-NCs bind specifically to extracellular and all intra-erythrocytic stages of P. falciparum. Glc-NCs may be used as drug delivery agents as illustrated for ciprofloxacin, a poorly soluble antibiotic with low antimalarial activity. Ciprofloxacin conjugated to Glc-NCs is more water-soluble than the free drug and is more potent. Glyco-gold nanoparticles that target cysteine-rich domains on parasites may be helpful for the prevention and treatment of malaria.