As microbial resistance to drugs continues to rise at an alarming rate, finding new ways to combat pathogens is an issue of utmost importance. Development of novel and specific antimicrobial drugs is a time-consuming and expensive process. However, the re-purposing of previously tested and/or approved drugs could be a feasible way to circumvent this long and costly process. In this review, we evaluate the U.S. Food and Drug Administration tested drugs auranofin, ebselen, and PX-12 as antimicrobial agents targeting the thioredoxin system. These drugs have been shown to act on bacterial, fungal, protozoan, and helminth pathogens without significant toxicity to the host. We propose that the thioredoxin system could serve as a useful therapeutic target with broad spectrum antimicrobial activity.
- Antimicrobial resistance
- Drug target