ACTRI KL2 Awardee Anjan Debnath Publishes Findings about Compounds in Desert Bush to Treat Parasitic Infections

August 23, 2017 | Patti Wieser

Anjan Debnath, PhD

ACTRI KL2 awardee Anjan Debnath, PhD, co-led a research team studying the effects of compounds produced by the desert creosote bush on treating deadly parasitic infections. The findings are published in the Public Library of Science (PLOS) Journal and featured in a UC San Diego Health story, “Compounds in Desert Creosote Bush Could Treat Giardia and ‘Brain-eating’ Amoeba Infections.”

Debnath, an assistant adjunct professor at Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at UC San Diego, is the co-principal investigator of the study. In 2016, he received an ACTRI KL2 grant, which supports him, in part, on this study. The KL2 is an award for junior faculty that offers training and mentored research experience for up to three years. Debnath’s KL2 project focuses on a novel approach to inhibiting a critical enzyme in brain eating amoeba.

“Support from the KL2 program was incredibly valuable in expanding the antiparasitic activity study of compounds isolated from the creosote bush to identifying a target in Naegleria fowleri,” said Dr. Debnath.

Read the abstract of the newly published paper, Larrea tridentata: A novel source for anti-parasitic agents active against Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia lamblia and Naegleria fowleri, which is available online in the August 9 issue of PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases.