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The effect of D,L-alpha-difluoromethylornithine (DFMO) on thiol and polyamine levels in Trypanosoma brucei was investigated by isolating trypanosomes from infected rats treated with DFMO for 12-48 h. Concentrations of thiols, polyamines and other amino-compounds were measured by an automated high-performance liquid chromatography method. The levels of DFMO(More)
Leishmania sp. protozoa are introduced into a mammalian skin by a sandfly vector, whereupon they encounter increased temperature and toxic oxidants generated during phagocytosis. We studied the effects of 37 degrees C "heat shock" or sublethal menadione, which generates superoxide and hydrogen peroxide, on Leishmania chagasi virulence. Both heat and(More)
During polyamine catabolism, spermine and spermidine are first acetylated by spermidine/spermine N(1)-acetyltransferase (SSAT) and subsequently oxidized by polyamine oxidase (PAO) to produce spermidine and putrescine, respectively. In attempting to clone the PAO involved in this back-conversion pathway, we encountered an oxidase that preferentially cleaves(More)
alpha-Difluoromethylornithine (RMI 71,782), a specific irreversible inhibitor of the first step in polyamine biosynthesis, that is, the formation of putrescine from ornithine by ornithine decarboxylase, cures mice infected with a virulent, rodent-passaged strain of Trypanosoma brucei brucei. This parasite is closely related to the trypanosomes that cause(More)
A series of polyaminoguanidines and polyaminobiguanides were synthesized and evaluated as potential antitrypanosomal agents. These analogues inhibit trypanothione reductase (TR) with IC50 values as low as 0.95 microM, but do not inhibit the closely related human enzyme glutathione reductase (GR). The most effective analogues, 7a, 7b and 8d, inhibited(More)
DL-alpha-difluoromethylornithine (DFMO), a specific irreversible inhibitor of ornithine decarboxylase (ODC), rapidly depletes cells of intracellular putrescine. When administered to animals and humans, DFMO cures acute infections of trypanosomiasis. In order to determine if the mechanism of drug action is related to initiation of transformation and(More)
BACKGROUND Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) is an important public health problem in sub-Saharan Africa, affecting hundreds of thousands of individuals. An urgent need exists for the discovery and development of new, safe, and effective drugs to treat HAT, as existing therapies suffer from poor safety profiles, difficult treatment regimens, limited(More)
Human Africa trypanosomiasis is a centuries-old disease which has disrupted sub-Saharan Africa in both physical suffering and economic loss. This article presents an update of classic chemotherapeutic agents, in use for >50 years and the recent development of promising non-toxic combination chemotherapy suitable for use in rural clinics.