Antimalarial lead-optimization studies on a 2,6-imidazopyridine series within a constrained chemical space to circumvent atypical dose-response curves against multidrug resistant parasite strains


A lead-optimization program around a 2,6-imidazopyridine scaffold was initiated based on the two early lead compounds, 1 and 2, that were shown to be efficacious in an in vivo humanized Plasmodium falciparum NODscidIL2Rγnull mouse malaria infection model. The observation of atypical dose-response curves when some compounds were tested against multidrug resistant malaria parasite strains guided the optimization process to define a chemical space that led to typical sigmoidal dose-response and complete kill of multidrug resistant parasites. After a structure and property analysis identified such a chemical space, compounds were prepared that displayed suitable activity, ADME, and safety profiles with respect to cytotoxicity and hERG inhibition.

Journal details

Volume 61
Issue number 20
Pages 9371-9385
Available online
Publication date


Crick labs/facilities