Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Completely Different Way Of Looking For A New Antibiotic

Date:
May 29, 2009
Source:
McMaster University
Summary:
Researchers have built a method of looking for molecules that will disturb the balance between them, offering a completely different way of looking for a new antibiotic that would be active against the cell wall.

As the best drugs become increasingly resistant to superbugs, McMaster University researchers have discovered a completely different way of looking for a new antibiotic.

In a paper to be published published Friday, May 29 in the journal Chemistry and Biology, with colleagues in Germany and Wilfrid Laurier University, they report on work with the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, the leading cause of infections in hospitals and the second most common community-acquired infection. Fewer and fewer antibiotics are effective against this bacteria.

Cell wall-active antibiotics, such as penicillin, kill bacteria by blocking production of the cell wall.

The researchers provide new evidence for genetic connections among three processes in the cell wall - teichoic acid, peptidoglycan and poly-isoprenoid synthesis. "Never before has such a profound link been drawn between these biosynthetic pathways supported by genetic, computational and biochemical evidence," they said in their paper.

"We found a connection that perhaps no one expected in the way the cell wall synthesis is wired," said lead author Eric Brown, professor and chair of the department of biochemistry and biomedical sciences in the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine.

"We found they are inextricably linked in their genetics and biochemistry," he said. "Along the way in this study, we have built a system that is ripe for being exploited as a way to search for small molecule drugs that would target these processes."

Potentially, he said, this may lead to the development of a new antibiotic.

Brown said the current arsenal of antibiotics was developed during the golden age of antibiotic drug discovery from 1930 to 1960, and then development stopped.

Research began again in earnest, he said, when troublesome strains of hospital and community-acquired infections began to emerge, such as MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). "Since the 1960s, drug companies have for, the most part, been tweaking existing molecules, such as building better penicillin with minor changes to the original scaffold. But, you are not very far away from resistance when all you do is a little tweak."

The discovery of a "surprising link" between the three processes involved in cell wall synthesis lets researchers build a method of looking for molecules that will disturb the balance between them. "It offers a completely different way of looking for a new antibiotic that would be active against the cell wall," Brown said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by McMaster University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Michael A. D'Elia, Kathryn E. Millar, Amit P. Bhavsar, Ana M. Tomljenovic, Bernd Hutter, Christoph Schaab, Gabriel Moreno-Hagelsieb, Eric D. Brown. Probing Teichoic Acid Genetics with Bioactive Molecules Reveals New Interactions among Diverse Processes in Bacterial Cell Wall Biogenesis. Chemistry and Biology, 2009; DOI: 10.1016/j.chembiol.2009.04.009

Cite This Page:

McMaster University. "Completely Different Way Of Looking For A New Antibiotic." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 May 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090528120649.htm>.
McMaster University. (2009, May 29). Completely Different Way Of Looking For A New Antibiotic. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090528120649.htm
McMaster University. "Completely Different Way Of Looking For A New Antibiotic." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090528120649.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins