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Protein toxins constitute the main virulence factors of several species of bacteria and have proven to be attractive targets for drug development. Lead candidates that target bacterial toxins range from small molecules to polymeric binders, and act at each of the multiple steps in the process of toxin-mediated pathogenicity. Despite recent and significant advances in the field, a rationally designed drug that targets toxins has yet to reach the market. This Review presents the state of the art in bacterial toxin targeted drug development with a critical consideration of achieved breakthroughs and withstanding challenges. The discussion focuses on A-B-type protein toxins secreted by four species of bacteria, namely Clostridium difficile (toxins A and B), Vibrio cholerae (cholera toxin), enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (Shiga toxin), and Bacillus anthracis (anthrax toxin), which are the causative agents of diseases for which treatments need to be improved. Copyright © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Mattias E Ivarsson, Jean-Christophe Leroux, Bastien Castagner. Targeting bacterial toxins. Angewandte Chemie (International ed. in English). 2012 Apr 23;51(17):4024-45

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PMID: 22441768

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