Methods for Treating Cerebral Edema and Restoring Blood-Brain Barrier Integrity

There are nearly 600 million clinical cases of Plasmodium falciparum malaria annually. For most individuals living in endemic areas, malaria is uncomplicated and resolves with time. However, malaria can become severe and life threatening in young children, which resulted in 429,000 deaths in 2015. One of the most deadly complications of P. falciparum infection is cerebral malaria (HCM) characterized by the onset of severe neurological signs such as altered consciousness, seizures, and coma. Thus, there is an urgent need for the development of effective adjunctive therapies that can be used in conjunction with anti-malarials to treat children with HCM.

The inventors, listed below, have discovered that glutamine antagonists can be used to treat mice with experimental cerebral malaria (ECM) in conjunction with anti-malarials. It was found that glutamine antagonist, 6-diazo-5-L-norleucine (DON) successfully restored blood-brain barrier integrity and decreased brain swelling in ECM mice. This finding suggests that glutamine antagonists may be effective in treating neurological damage in HCM patients.

This technology is available for licensing for commercial development in accordance with 35 U.S.C. 209 and 37 CFR part 404, as well as for further development and evaluation under a research collaboration.

Potential Commercial Applications: Competitive Advantages:
  • Therapeutic for cerebral malaria
  • Effective adjunctive therapeutics for cerebral malaria are not available.


Susan Pierce (NIAID)  ➽ more inventions...

Johnathan Powell

Intellectual Property:
US Application No. 62/175,000
PCT Application No. PCT/US2016/036996

Gordon EB, et al. PMID 26438846

Collaboration Opportunity:

For collaboration opportunities, please contact Chris Kornak, or 240-627-3705.

Licensing Contact:
Christopher Kornak, J.D.
Phone: 240-627-3705

OTT Reference No: E-202-2015-0
Updated: Jun 14, 2017