LSTM Home > LSTM Research > LSTM Online Archive

In Silico Docking of Nematode β-Tubulins With Benzimidazoles Points to Gene Expression and Orthologue Variation as Factors in Anthelmintic Resistance

Jones, Ben P., van Vliet, Arnoud H. M., LaCourse, James ORCID: and Betson, Martha (2022) 'In Silico Docking of Nematode β-Tubulins With Benzimidazoles Points to Gene Expression and Orthologue Variation as Factors in Anthelmintic Resistance'. Frontiers in Tropical Diseases, Vol 3.

fitd-03-898814.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (3MB) | Preview


The efficacy of benzimidazole anthelmintics can vary depending on the target parasite, with Ascaris nematodes being highly responsive, and whipworms being less responsive. Anthelmintic resistance has become widespread, particularly in strongyle nematodes such as Haemonchus contortus in ruminants, and resistance has recently been detected in hookworms of humans and dogs. Past work has shown that there are multiple β-tubulin isotypes in helminths, yet only a few of these contribute to benzimidazole interactions and resistance. The β-tubulin isotypes of ascarids and soil-transmitted helminths were identified by mining available genome data, and phylogenetic analysis showed that the ascarids share a similar repertoire of seven β-tubulin isotypes. Strongyles also have a consistent pattern of four β-tubulin isotypes. In contrast, the whipworms only have two isotypes, with one of these clustering more basally and distinct from any other group. Key β-tubulin isotypes selected based on previous studies were the focus of in silico molecular docking simulations to look at the interactions with benzimidazoles. These showed that all β-tubulins had similar interactions with benzimidazoles and maintained the key bond with residue E198 in all species, indicating similar mechanisms of action. However, the interaction was stronger and more consistent in the strongyles and whipworms than it was in the ascarids. Alteration of β-tubulin isotypes with the common resistance-associated mutations originally identified in H. contortus resulted in similar interaction modeling for all species. In conclusion, ascarids, strongyles, and whipworms all have their own unique repertoire of β-tubulins, which could explain why benzimidazole resistance and susceptibility varies between these groups of parasites. These data complement recent work that has highlighted the roles of essential residues in benzimidazole drug binding and shows that there is a separation between strongyle parasites that frequently develop resistance and ascarid parasites, which have been much less prone to developing resistance.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QU Biochemistry > Genetics > QU 500 Genetic phenomena
QV Pharmacology > Anti-Inflammatory Agents. Anti-Infective Agents. Antineoplastic Agents > QV 253 Anthelmintics
QX Parasitology > Helminths. Annelida > QX 200 Helminths
QX Parasitology > Helminths. Annelida > QX 203 Nematoda
Faculty: Department: Education
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
SWORD Depositor: JISC Pubrouter
Depositing User: JISC Pubrouter
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2022 10:32
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2023 15:20


View details

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item