Zika is a disease caused by the flavivirus Zika Virus (ZIKV), causing mostly mild symptoms such as fever, rash, headaches, joint and muscle pain and conjunctivitis. It has received renewed attention in the last years due to the 2015 outbreak in South America, which revealed its ability to also cause fetal malformation and Guillain-Barré Syndrome.
Most efforts against Zika and related infections focus on efforts to generate a vaccine or eradicate the urban vector, the mosquito Aedes aegypti, which is also responsible for transmission of other arboviruses such as Dengue, Yellow Fever and Chikungunya. However, once infected, there is no specific medicine available to combat the virus, and the options are restricted to symptomatic treatment.
One alternative to a long drug development program, which can take over 10 years with no guarantee of reaching a candidate, is to repurpose already available drugs to combat other diseases. In this webinar a recent effort will be shown in which Molecular Dynamics and Docking simulations were combined to scan a database of FDA-approved drugs for molecules that could potentially be used to fight Zika infection.