A Case for Phosphoinositide 3-Kinase-Targeted Therapy for Infectious Disease

J Immunol. 2020 Dec 15;205(12):3237-3245. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.2000599.


PI3Ks activate critical signaling cascades and have multifaceted regulatory functions in the immune system. Loss-of-function and gain-of-function mutations in the PI3Kδ isoform have revealed that this enzyme can substantially impact immune responses to infectious agents and their products. Moreover, reports garnered from decades of infectious disease studies indicate that pharmacologic inhibition of the PI3K pathway could potentially be effective in limiting the growth of certain microbes via modulation of the immune system. In this review, we briefly highlight the development and applications of PI3K inhibitors and summarize data supporting the concept that PI3Kδ inhibitors initially developed for oncology have immune regulatory potential that could be exploited to improve the control of some infectious diseases. This repurposing of existing kinase inhibitors could lay the foundation for alternative infectious disease therapy using available therapeutic agents.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Communicable Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Communicable Diseases / immunology
  • Drug Repositioning*
  • Humans
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy*
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / immunology*
  • Phosphoinositide-3 Kinase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*


  • Phosphoinositide-3 Kinase Inhibitors

Grants and funding