Seeking the Elusive Long-Acting Ozonide: Discovery of Artefenomel (OZ439)

J Med Chem. 2017 Apr 13;60(7):2651-2653. doi: 10.1021/acs.jmedchem.7b00299. Epub 2017 Mar 15.


The majority of frontline therapies for the treatment of malaria are combination drugs containing artemisinin (or its semisynthetic analogs), known as artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs). While generally efficacious, ACTs and the first generation fully synthetic ozonide, arterolane (OZ277, 1), suffer from rapid clearance requiring 3-day dosing regimens. Extensive structure-activity studies led to the discovery of a second-generation ozonide, artefenomel (OZ439, 2), which has overcome this limitation, maintaining the rapid onset of action and potent activity of the artemisinin derivatives while exhibiting greatly improved pharmacokinetics, low projected cost of goods, prophylactic activity, and the potential for a single dose cure.

MeSH terms

  • Adamantane / analogs & derivatives*
  • Adamantane / chemistry
  • Adamantane / pharmacology
  • Adamantane / therapeutic use
  • Animals
  • Antimalarials / chemistry*
  • Antimalarials / pharmacology*
  • Antimalarials / therapeutic use
  • Drug Discovery*
  • Humans
  • Malaria / drug therapy*
  • Peroxides / chemistry*
  • Peroxides / pharmacology*
  • Peroxides / therapeutic use
  • Plasmodium / drug effects*


  • Antimalarials
  • Peroxides
  • Adamantane
  • artefenomel