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Repurposing of the antibiotic nitroxoline for the treatment of mpox

Bojkova, Denisa, Zöller, Nadja, Tietgen, Manuela, Steinhorst, Katja, Bechtel, Marco, Rothenburger, Tamara, Kandler, Joshua D., Schneider, Julia, Corman, Victor M., Ciesek, Sandra, and others. (2023) Repurposing of the antibiotic nitroxoline for the treatment of mpox. Journal of Medical Virology, 95 (3). Article Number e28652. ISSN 0146-6615. E-ISSN 1096-9071. (doi:10.1002/jmv.28652) (KAR id:100542)


The antiviral drugs tecovirimat, brincidofovir, and cidofovir are considered for mpox (monkeypox) treatment despite a lack of clinical evidence. Moreover, their use is affected by toxic side‐effects (brincidofovir, cidofovir), limited availability (tecovirimat), and potentially by resistance formation. Hence, additional, readily available drugs are needed. Here, therapeutic concentrations of nitroxoline, a hydroxyquinoline antibiotic with a favourable safety profile in humans, inhibited the replication of 12 mpox virus isolates from the current outbreak in primary cultures of human keratinocytes and fibroblasts and a skin explant model by interference with host cell signalling. Tecovirimat, but not nitroxoline, treatment resulted in rapid resistance development. Nitroxoline remained effective against the tecovirimat‐resistant strain and increased the anti‐mpox virus activity of tecovirimat and brincidofovir. Moreover, nitroxoline inhibited bacterial and viral pathogens that are often co‐transmitted with mpox. In conclusion, nitroxoline is a repurposing candidate for the treatment of mpox due to both antiviral and antimicrobial activity.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1002/jmv.28652
Uncontrolled keywords: antiviral drugs, antiviral therapy, chelator, drug repurposing, monkeypox, orthopoxvirus, poxvirus
Subjects: Q Science
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Natural Sciences > Biosciences
SWORD Depositor: JISC Publications Router
Depositing User: JISC Publications Router
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2023 16:07 UTC
Last Modified: 21 Apr 2023 13:27 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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