The primary effector of cGMP signaling in Plasmodium is the cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG). Work in human-infective Plasmodium falciparum and rodent-infective Plasmodium berghei has provided biological validation of P. falciparum PKG (PfPKG) as a drug target for treating and/or protecting against malaria. PfPKG is essential in the asexual erythrocytic and sexual cycles as well as the pre-erythrocytic cycle. Medicinal chemistry efforts, both target-based and phenotype-based, have targeted PfPKG in the past few years. This review provides a brief overview of their results and challenges.
- cGMP signaling
- second messenger