The enormous prevalence of infections caused by parasitic nematodes worldwide, coupled to the rapid emergence of their resistance to commonly used anthelmintic drugs, presents an urgent need for the discovery of new drugs. Herein, we have identified several classes of small molecules with broad spectrum activity against these pathogens. Previously, we reported the identification of carnitine palmitoyltransferases (CPTs) as a representative class of enzymes as potential targets for metabolic chokepoint intervention that was elucidated from a combination of chemogenomic screening and experimental testing in nematodes. Expanding on these previous findings, we have discovered that several chemical classes of known small molecule inhibitors of mammalian CPTs have potent activity as anthelmintics. Cross-clade efficacy against a broad spectrum of adult parasitic nematodes was demonstrated for multiple compounds from different series. Several analogs of these initial hit compounds were designed and synthesized. The compounds we report represent a good starting point for further lead identification and optimization for development of new anthelmintic drugs with broad spectrum activity and a novel mechanism of action.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1130-1145
Number of pages16
JournalACS Infectious Diseases
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 13 2018


  • anthelmintic
  • bioaccumulation
  • carnitine palmitoyltransferase (CPT)
  • filarial nematode
  • hookworm
  • in vitro
  • in vivo
  • parasitic nematodes
  • target class repurposing
  • whipworm
  • whole worm assay


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