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A series of 1-aryl-4-(phthalimidoalkyl) piperazines and 1-aryl-4-(naphthalimidoalkyl) piperazines were retrieved from a proprietary library based on their high structural similarity to haloperidol, an antipsychotic with antiparasitic activity, and assessed as potential antileishmanial scaffolds. Selected compounds were tested for antileishmanial activity against promastigotes of Leishmania major and Leishmania mexicana in dose-response assays. Two of the 1-aryl-4-(naphthalimidoalkyl) piperazines (compounds 10 and 11) were active against promastigotes of both Leishmania species without being toxic to human fibroblasts. Their activity was found to correlate with the length of their alkyl chains. Further analyses showed that compound 11 was also active against intracellular amastigotes of both Leishmania species. In promastigotes of both Leishmania species, compound 11 induced collapse of the mitochondrial electrochemical potential and increased the intracellular Ca2+ concentration. Therefore, it may serve as a promising lead compound for the development of novel antiparasitic drugs. Copyright © 2022. Published by Elsevier B.V.


Ermin Schadich, Susanne Nylén, Soňa Gurská, Jana Kotulová, Sergey Andronati, Victor Pavlovsky, Svetlana Soboleva, Pavel Polishchuk, Marián Hajdúch, Petr Džubák. Activity of 1-aryl-4-(naphthalimidoalkyl) piperazine derivatives against Leishmania major and Leishmania mexicana. Parasitology international. 2022 Dec;91:102647

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PMID: 35985636

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