Research Notes - Dr. Vennerstrom helps develop single-dose malaria drug

by Tom O'Connor, UNMC public relations | February 21, 2011

Jonathan Vennerstrom, Ph.D., professor in the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy, has helped lead the discovery of a single-dose oral antimalarial drug candidate.

About the drug: The drug -- OZ439 -- tested well in Phase I clinical trials and now moves into Phase II trials.

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Jonathan Vennerstrom, Ph.D.
Significance: Other comparable drug candidates must be taken three times daily. A single dose is more convenient and helps ensure patients get the right amount of medicine. Also, the cost to manufacture OZ439 is about half that of a comparable candidates.

Project support: Dr. Vennerstrom's research on the drug was supported by Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), a nonprofit organization based in Geneva, Switzerland which receives 60 percent of its funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Other team members working with Dr. Vennerstrom come from Monash University in Australia and the Swiss Tropical Institute in Basel, Switzerland.

Read more: The discovery of OZ439 recently was reported in the science journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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