Journal article

Old Drug, New Trick: Tilorone, a Broad-Spectrum Antiviral Drug as a Potential Anti-Fibrotic Therapeutic for the Diseased Heart

Duncan Horlock, David M Kaye, Catherine E Winbanks, Xiao-Ming Gao, Helen Kiriazis, Daniel G Donner, Paul Gregorevic, Julie R McMullen, Bianca C Bernardo

Pharmaceuticals | MDPI | Published : 2021


Cardiac fibrosis is associated with most forms of cardiovascular disease. No reliable therapies targeting cardiac fibrosis are available, thus identifying novel drugs that can resolve or prevent fibrosis is needed. Tilorone, an antiviral agent, can prevent fibrosis in a mouse model of lung disease. We investigated the anti-fibrotic effects of tilorone in human cardiac fibroblasts in vitro by performing a radioisotopic assay for [3H]-proline incorporation as a proxy for collagen synthesis. Exploratory studies in human cardiac fibroblasts treated with tilorone (10 µM) showed a significant reduction in transforming growth factor-β induced collagen synthesis compared to untreated fibroblasts. To..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Funding Acknowledgements

This work was supported by a Heine Program Project Grant (to B.C.B., D.M.K. and J.R.M.) and a Di Bertalli ECS Project Grant (to B.C.B. and C.E.W.). B.C.B. is supported by an Alice Baker and Eleanor Shaw Fellowship (The Baker Foundation, Australia). D.M.K., P.G. and J.R.M. are supported by Fellowships from the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia. The Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute is supported in part by the Victorian Government's Operational Infrastructure Support Program.