Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Two heads better than one in new antibiotic method

Date:
December 4, 2009
Source:
Norwich BioScience Institutes
Summary:
An antibiotic that binds to a well-established target in a novel and unexpected way could be the inspiration for designing new, more potent antibacterial drugs.

An antibiotic that binds to a well-established target in a novel and unexpected way could be the inspiration for designing new, more potent antibacterial drugs.

Related Articles


"A completely new way to beat bacteria is an exciting find at a time when resistance to existing antibiotics is growing," said Professor Tony Maxwell from the John Innes Centre, lead author on the research to be published in Science. JIC is an institute of the BBSRC.

The antibiotic molecule slots into pockets in the surface of a bacterial enzyme, DNA gyrase, and inhibits its activity. Gyrase is essential for bacteria to survive and grow. However, it is not present in humans so is an ideal, and already established, target for antibiotics.

"If you can knock out this enzyme, you have a potential new drug," says Prof Maxwell.

The molecule has two heads that dock into separate pockets in DNA gyrase, and together they are 100 times more powerful than when working individually. Neither pocket has previously been exploited by antibacterial drugs that target this enzyme. Although bacteria could develop resistance to this mode of action, it might be occur less readily than with other antibiotics.

"The fact that there are two pockets means that it might require simultaneous mutations in both pockets for the bacteria to acquire full resistance to the drug, which is much less likely," explains Professor Maxwell.

"You could say that this is a case of two heads being better than one."

The antibiotic molecule, simocyclinone D8 (SD8), is a currently unexploited natural product made by soil bacteria. SD8 itself does not easily penetrate bacterial cells, but it raises the possibility of finding other molecules that fit into the binding pockets, or designing molecules that work by this mechanism but that penetrate cells more easily.

The current method of antibiotic drug discovery is to screen protein targets or bacteria against vast libraries of compounds. Any hits are investigated in more detail.

The research reported in Science is a big advance as the scientists already know in detail how the molecule works. It can now be modified, or new compounds developed, to design new drugs.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Norwich BioScience Institutes. "Two heads better than one in new antibiotic method." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 December 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/12/091203141907.htm>.
Norwich BioScience Institutes. (2009, December 4). Two heads better than one in new antibiotic method. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/12/091203141907.htm
Norwich BioScience Institutes. "Two heads better than one in new antibiotic method." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/12/091203141907.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Galapagos Tortoises Bounce Back, But Ecosystem Lags

Galapagos Tortoises Bounce Back, But Ecosystem Lags

Newsy (Oct. 29, 2014) The Galapagos tortoise has made a stupendous recovery from the brink of extinction to a population of more than 1,000. But it still faces threats. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Drinking Milk Lead To Early Death?

Can Drinking Milk Lead To Early Death?

Newsy (Oct. 29, 2014) Researchers in Sweden released a study showing heavy milk drinkers face an increased mortality risk from a variety of causes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) Surrounded by health care workers in the White House East Room, President Barack Obama said the U.S. will likely see additional Ebola cases in the weeks ahead. But he said the nation can't seal itself off in the fight against the disease. (Oct. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Oatmeal Healthy Recipes and Benefits

Oatmeal Healthy Recipes and Benefits

Buzz60 (Oct. 29, 2014) Oatmeal is a fantastic way to start your day. Whichever way you prepare them, oats provide your body with many health benefits. In celebration of National Oatmeal Day, Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has a few recipe ideas, and tips on how to kickstart your day with this wholesome snack! Video provided by Buzz60
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

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