Freie Universitat Berlin Logo Professionals seem to have come close to developing efficient therapies for deadly conditions. A research conducted by scientists at Freie Universität Berlin, NeuroCure Cluster of Excellence and Leibniz Institute for Molecular Pharmacology (FMP) in Berlin has revealed small molecules that prohibit the internalization of infectious organisms like immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and bacteria into cells. These compounds apparently lead to the inhibition of the cellular scaffold protein clathrin which has the potential to serve as a therapeutic avenue for treating cancer, viral or bacterial pathogens and neurological conditions.

Interactions within the nervous system are dependent on the intracellular scaffold protein clathrin. The latter is responsible for the production of 100nm sized vesicles. These are known to move the signaling molecules back and forth into the internal region of the cell or serve as a source of preserving the accelerated release of transmitter in the nervous system. The investigators made use of small molecule compound libraries constituting nearly 20,000 varied substances coupled with medicinal chemistry-based synthesis. This was done with the purpose of locating tiny molecules that particularly prevent uniting of clathrin to its adjacent proteins.

These are termed pitstops which seemingly inhibit the absorption of signaling molecules that cause cell development. It also seems to cease the arrival of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) into cells within no time. The analysts used shimmering fluorescent proteins that could help locate the damaged dynamics of clathrin and its fellow proteins. They uncovered it as the root cause for internalization block.

“Vesicle formation appears stalled as if you had put your cells into the freezer. Similar effects have been observed in lamprey and in cultured nerve cells from mice or rats treated with pitstops resulting in a block in vesicle reformation and neurotransmission. As many neurological disorders, such as epilepsy are caused by overexcitability of nerve cells dampening of neurotransmission by pitstops and like substances could open new avenues for the therapy of these diseases,” specified NeuroCure scientist Volker Haucke.

He further added that Clathrin-mediated uptake into cells is very vital as these inhibitors would be of great help to unravel new medications for untreatable cancers like brain tumors and so on. Some blockages whose division relies on internalization of signaling molecules can be supposedly ceased.

These results were published in the latest issue of the journal Cell.