In an effort to develop a potent anti-malarial agent against Plasmodium falciparum, a structure-guided virtual screening using an in-house library comprising 652 compounds was performed. By docking studies, we identified two compounds (JMI-105 and JMI-346) which formed significant non-covalent interactions and fit well in the binding pocket of PfFP-2. We affirmed this observation by MD simulation studies.
Malaria kills over 400,000 people each year and nearly half the world’s population live in at-risk areas. Progress against malaria has recently stalled, highlighting the need for developing novel therapeutics. The parasite haemoglobin degradation pathway, active in the blood stage of the disease where malaria symptoms and lethality manifest, is a well-established drug target. A key enzyme in this pathway is the papain-type protease falcipain-2.