Apr 11, 2020

The FDA-approved drugs ticlopidine, sertaconazole, and dexlansoprazole can cause morphological changes in C. elegans

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
K. F. Galford, Antony Merlin Jose


Urgent need for treatments limit studies of therapeutic drugs before approval by regulatory agencies. Analyses of drugs after approval can therefore improve our understanding of their mechanism of action and enable better therapies. We screened a library of 1443 Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved drugs using a simple assay in the nematode C. elegans and found three compounds that caused morphological changes. While the anticoagulant ticlopidine and the antifungal sertaconazole caused morphologically distinct pharyngeal defects upon acute exposure, the proton-pump inhibitor dexlansoprazole caused molting defects and required exposure during larval development. Such easily detectable defects in a powerful genetic model system advocate the continued exploration of current medicines using a variety of model organisms to better understand drugs already prescribed to millions of patients.

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