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In silico Screening for Identification of Novel Anti-malarial Inhibitors by Molecular Docking, Pharmacophore Modeling and Virtual Screening

[ Vol. 11 , Issue. 7 ]


Sidra Batool, Zeshan Aslam Khan, Warda Kamal, Gohar Mushtaq and Mohammad Amjad Kamal   Pages 687 - 700 ( 14 )


Objective: Drug resistance from affordable drugs has increased the number of deaths from malaria globally. This problem has raised the requirement to design new drugs against multidrugresistant Plasmodium falciparum parasite. Methods: In the current project, we have focused on four important proteins of Plasmodium falciparum and used them as receptors against a dataset of four anti-malarial drugs. In silico analysis of these receptors and ligand dataset was carried out using Autodock 4.2. A pharmacophore model was also established using Ligandscout. Results: Analysis of docking experiments showed that all ligands bind efficiently to four proteins of Plasmodium falciparum. We have used ligand-based pharmacophore modeling and developed a pharmacophore model that has three hydrophobic regions, two aromatic rings, one hydrogen acceptor and one hydrogen donor. Using this pharmacophore model, we have screened a library of 50,000 compounds. The compounds that shared features of our pharmacophore model and exhibited interactions with the four proteins of our receptors dataset are short-listed. Conclusion: As there is a need of more anti-malarial drugs, therefore, this research will be helpful in identifying novel anti-malarial drugs that exhibited bindings with four important proteins of Plasmodium falciparum. The hits obtained in this study can be considered as useful leads in anti-malarial drug discovery.


Drug design, virtual screening, cheminformatics, docking, pharmacophore modeling, Plasmodium falciparum, antimalarials, princeton database.


King Fahd Medical Research Center, King Abdulaziz University, P. O. Box 80216, Jeddah 21589, Saudi Arabia.

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