Parasitic protozoa infecting humans have a great impact on public health, especially in the developing countries. In many instances, the parasites have developed resistance against available chemotherapeutic agents, making the search for alternative drugs a priority. In line with the current interest in Protein Kinase (PK) inhibitors as potential drugs against a variety of diseases, the possibility that PKs may represent targets for novel anti-parasitic agents is being explored. Research into parasite PKs has benefited greatly from genome and EST sequencing projects, with the genomes from a few species fully sequenced (notably that from the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum) and several more under way, the structural features that are important to design specific inhibitors against these PKs will be reviewed in the present work.
Keywords: Kinases, parasites, drug design, crystallography, Apicomplexa
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