Chagas disease is an infectious tropical disease included within the group of neglected tropical
diseases. Though historically endemic to Latin America, it has lately spread to high-income countries
due to human migration. At present, there are only two available drugs, nifurtimox and benznidazole,
approved for this treatment, both with considerable side-effects (which often result in treatment
interruption) and limited efficacy in the chronic stage of the disease in adults.
Drug repositioning involves finding novel therapeutic indications for known drugs, including approved,
withdrawn, abandoned and investigational drugs. It is today a broadly applied approach to develop
innovative medications, since indication shifts are built on existing safety, ADME and manufacturing
information, thus greatly shortening development timeframes. Drug repositioning has been signaled as
a particularly interesting strategy to search for new therapeutic solutions for neglected and rare conditions,
which traditionally present limited commercial interest and are mostly covered by the public
sector and not-for-profit initiatives and organizations.
Here, we review the applications of computer-aided technologies as systematic approaches to drug
repositioning in the field of Chagas disease. In silico screening represents the most explored approach,
whereas other rational methods such as network-based and signature-based approximations have still
not been applied.