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Paul Carlier

  • Department of Chemistry
  • College of Science
  • Director, Virginia Tech Center for Drug Discovery


The Carlier lab is actively engaged in developing new therapeutics and discovering new targets to treat drug-resistant malaria and bacterial infections.


Malaria is a scourge in the developing world, affecting 200 million people and killing nearly 450,000 annually. To reduce malaria transmission and mortality, the Carlier lab is taking a two-pronged strategy. First and foremost, new antimalarial drugs need to be developed in order to treat infected individuals. The lab is working with Prof. Cassera from the University of Georgia and Dr. Totrov of Molsoft LLC to develop new classes of antimalarial drugs that engage new biological targets in the parasite.

Secondly, the lab is working with Prof. Mike Klemba, from Virginia Tech's Department of Biochemistry, to determine the biological target of mefloquine (MQ), a currently used prophylactic drug that can cause neuropsychiatric side-effects. By identifying the target of MQ, the lab will be positioned to discover new antimalarials that lack the neuropsychiatric side-effects. 

Additionally, antibiotic-resistant bacteria also pose a great threat to public health in the developed world. The Carlier lab is working with researchers at Virginia Tech and in the Commonwealth of Virginia to identify new antibiotics to treat these infections.