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Int J Mycobacteriol. 2019 Jul-Sep;8(3):229-236. doi: 10.4103/ijmy.ijmy_123_19.

Multiple docking analysis and In silico absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, and toxicity screening of anti-leprosy phytochemicals and dapsone against dihydropteroate synthase of Mycobacterium leprae.

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Department of Bioinfomatics, Patkar College of Arts and Science, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
Molecular Genetics Research Laboratory, Bai Jerbai Wadia Hospital for Children, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.



Leprosy is a neglected tropical disease affecting millions of people. The current treatment against leprosy includes various antibacterial drugs of which dapsone is known to bind to dihydropteroate synthase of Mycobacterium leprae. Dapsone is an expensive antibacterial drug with many side effects. A natural alternative for dapsone having less to no side effects and cheaper in production is needed. The three-dimensional protein structure of dihydropteroate synthase of M. leprae is not available.


Protein homology modeling of target protein was carried out, and protein structure validation and energy minimization were performed. Phytochemicals mentioned in literature having anti-leprosy properties were studied for absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, and toxicity (ADMET) properties and that which passed ADMET filters were further carried for comparative in silico docking analysis along with dapsone. Preliminary docking analysis was carried using AutoDock Vina, and results obtained were validated using AutoDock 4.2.6 and SwissDock.


Neobavaisoflavone was predicted to be ten times safer for administration than dapsone. On performing in silico docking, it was found that neobavaisoflavone has better binding affinity than dapsone and forms a stable protein-ligand complex. Residues GLY.50, THR.88, and VAL.107 play an important role as binding site residues.


Further, in vitro and in vivo experimental studies are required to confirm anti-leprosy properties of neobavaisoflavone over drug dapsone.


Anti-leprosy; dapsone; molecular docking; neobavaisoflavone; phytochemicals

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