Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study findings offer potential new targets for antibiotics

01.11.2005


A new study of genetic changes in bacteria may ultimately help drug makers stay a step ahead of disease-causing bacteria that can become resistant to antibiotics.



The secret lies in understanding the function of the ribosome, a tiny protein-making factory residing inside most cells.

Many currently used antibiotics alter a ribosome’s ability to make proteins, said Kurt Fredrick, a study co-author and an assistant professor of microbiology at Ohio State University.


But he and his colleagues at the University of Illinois thought that there may be additional places in a ribosome that future antibiotics could affect, places that current antibiotics don’t currently target.

The researchers were right.

“Antibiotic resistance will always be an issue,” Fredrick said. “But as long as we can stay ahead of the ability of the pathogens to resist antibiotics, we’re okay.”

The findings appear online this week in the Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Fredrick co-authored the study with lead author Alexander Mankin and with Aymen Yassin, both with the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Fredrick provided a strain of Escherichia coli important for the study.

In order to find out if their initial hunch was correct – that there actually are other “hot spots” on a ribosome that could act as potential targets for antibiotics – the researchers first introduced a mutated copy of the ribosomal genes into E. coli cells and looked for those rare mutations that could interfere with cell growth. It was known from previous studies that such deleterious mutations occurred within critical regions of the ribosome.

After identifying dozens of deleterious mutations, the researchers were able to produce a composite map showing where these mutations were positioned on the ribosomes. Interestingly, the map indicated that there were four additional places on ribosomes where these mutations clustered. While researchers already knew that these sites existed, they did not know that these areas could possibly become targets for antibiotics.

These sites are what may one day give pharmaceutical companies an edge in creating new antibiotics in order to keep ahead of bacteria’s clever way of developing resistance to antibiotics.

“Now that we know these other sites exist and that they could be potential targets for antibiotics, the next step is to figure out how exactly these mutations interfere with the cell’s own ribosomes,” Fredrick said.

The research was supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Kurt Fredrick | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.osu.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>