Global health R&D at work in South Carolina
Clemson University researchers are seeking new treatments for sleeping sickness, a dis-ease that threatens millions of people in sub-Saharan Africa. Infection begins with the bite of a tsetse fly carrying a deadly parasite. Because the parasite also infects and kills livestock, it is a major obstacle to economic development in the region. Existing treatments are difficult to administer and can be toxic, even fatal. The scientists are studying metabolic targets that could lead to a cure. They aim to cut off the parasites from their source of energy: sugar. Molecules that show promise will be evaluated as potential drugs. If successful, the work could lead to treatments for other parasitic infections, such as Chagas disease and leishmaniasis.