A site-specific delivery system for treating Aspergillus infections.
Invasive Aspergillosis is a rapidly progressive, often fatal infection that occurs in patients who are severely immuno-suppressed (e.g. AIDS, cancer, diabetes, transplant and burn patients). Intensification of chemotherapy and the increasing number of transplants, as well as the emergence of new immunosuppressant drugs, is leading to the appearance of these infections in patients in whom they were previously uncommon (e.g. leukemia and lymphoma patients). Current medication has improved treatment of this disease, however, despite these advances in therapy, the invasive forms of Aspergillosis are often associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Furthermore, several side-effects are associated with these medications. The proposed technology allows for site-specific treatment of Aspergillus infections using an antibody conjugated to allicin, the active compound in garlic.
The major biologically active compound in crushed garlic component, allicin, is known to possess antimicrobial potential. It is created from its odorless precursor alliin, and the enzyme alliinase that converts alliin to allicin. The current technology consists of a drug delivery system that combines the targeting potential of antibodies with the potent antimicrobial activity of allicin. It includes conjugates of the enzyme alliinase with an antibody against Aspergillus that targets the alliinase to specific cells. Alliin that is administered thereafter is converted into allicin, the active compound, only at the desired target site that binds the conjugate.