Highly Potent; Highly Targeted
A new mathematical model aims to improve drugs for cancer, viruses and bacteria
Stephanie Sutton |
Peixuan Guo, Professor of the College of Pharmacy and Director of the University of Kentucky’s Nanobiotechnology Center, has antibacterial resistance in his sights. Moreover, he hopes to hit two birds with one stone by improving drug efficacy as well.
Guo and his colleagues have developed a method to target the multi-subunit complexes that viruses, bacteria and cancer need to function – and it could help develop more highly potent (and targeted) drugs.
The new approach has taken more than a decade to reach fruition but, in a nutshell, the team studied the relationship between the stoichiometry of a target component and inhibition efficiency, and developed a mathematical model that elucidates the potency of drug inhibition. Guo explains, “I found that virion assembly inhibition depends on the stoichiometry of the components. The unusual efficiency of inhibin primed me to investigate the mechanism of inhibition. It took more than 10 years to develop a mathematical model including Yan Hui Triangle and binomial distribution to elucidate the mechanism of inhibin. We found that the high efficiency of inhibin is due to K = 1; that is, binding of a drug to any one of the multiple subunit machines at any one of the locations will inactivate the entire biological machine or the complex.”
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