The global tuberculosis epidemic and emergence of drug resistance call for intensive research
on new antimycobacterial agents. Recent development is focused mainly on heterocyclic molecules.
In many cases, introduction of sulphur has improved antimicrobial activity; many drugs feature
a sulphur heterocycle. Thiophene derivatives and thiadiazoles including derived ortho-condensed heterocycles
have been found to have a wide range of biological activities. This review highlights the recent
progress in the field with a focus on whole-cell antimycobacterial activity of the agents as well as
targeting of enzymes from Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Some of the compounds have exhibited high
activity with submicromolar minimum inhibitory concentrations including activity against drug-resistant strains and/or
IC50 values for a range of enzymes as their targets (InhA, dehydroquinase, Pks13, carbonic anhydrases, DprE1). Mechanisms
of action, toxicity, and structure-activity relationships are also discussed. Several compounds have exhibited promising
in vitro and in vivo activities and safety profiles, thus constituting novel, promising leads.
Keywords: Antimycobacterial activity, Enzyme inhibition, Heterocycles, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Sulphur, Thiophene,
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