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Marine Microbiome as a Source of Antimalarials

Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Florida Atlantic University, Fort Pierce, FL 34946, USA
Division of Molecular Microbiology, Burnett School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL 32826, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2019, 4(3), 103;
Received: 21 May 2019 / Revised: 2 July 2019 / Accepted: 9 July 2019 / Published: 13 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drug Discovery and Development for Tropical Diseases)
PDF [402 KB, uploaded 13 July 2019]


It is important to discover novel antimalarial pharmacophores because of the widespread emergence of Plasmodium falciparum isolates resistant to the available drugs. Secondary metabolites derived from microbes associated with marine invertebrates are a valuable resource for the discovery of novel drug leads. However, the potential of marine microbes as a source of antimalarials has not been explored. We investigated the promise of marine microorganisms for the production of antimalarial activities by testing 2365 diverse microbial extracts using phenotypic screening of a multidrug resistant chloroquine resistant P. falciparum strain. We conducted counter screening against mammalian cells for the 317 active extracts that exhibited more than 70% inhibition at 1 µg/mL. The screen identified 17 potent bioactive leads from a broad range of taxa. Our results establish that the marine microbiome is a rich source of antiplasmodial compounds that warrants in depth exploration. View Full-Text
Keywords: Marine Microbe; Malaria; Plasmodium; Antimalarials; Harbor Branch Marine Microbe; Malaria; Plasmodium; Antimalarials; Harbor Branch

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McCarthy, P.J.; Roberts, B.F.; Carbonell, A.; Roberts, J.; Wright, A.E.; Chakrabarti, D. Marine Microbiome as a Source of Antimalarials. Trop. Med. Infect. Dis. 2019, 4, 103.

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