Pre-erythrocytic Activity of M5717 in Monotherapy and Combination in Preclinical Plasmodium Infection Models

ACS Infect Dis. 2022 Apr 8;8(4):721-727. doi: 10.1021/acsinfecdis.1c00640. Epub 2022 Mar 21.


Combination therapies have emerged to mitigate Plasmodium drug resistance, which has hampered the fight against malaria. M5717 is a potent multistage antiplasmodial drug under clinical development, which inhibits parasite protein synthesis. The combination of M5717 with pyronaridine, an inhibitor of hemozoin formation, displays potent activity against blood stage Plasmodium infection. However, the impact of this therapy on liver infection by Plasmodium remains unknown. Here, we employed a recently described 3D culture-based hepatic infection platform to evaluate the activity of the M5717-pyronaridine combination against hepatic infection by P. berghei. This effect was further confirmed in vivo by employing the C57BL/6J rodent Plasmodium infection model. Collectively, our data demonstrate that pyronaridine potentiates the activity of M5717 against P. berghei hepatic development. These preclinical results contribute to the validation of pyronaridine as a suitable partner drug for M5717, supporting the clinical evaluation of this novel antiplasmodial combination therapy.

Keywords: M5717; combination therapy; drug discovery; liver stage infection; malaria; pyronaridine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antimalarials* / pharmacology
  • Antimalarials* / therapeutic use
  • Drug Resistance
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Humans
  • Malaria* / drug therapy
  • Plasmodium*


  • Antimalarials