Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Novel chemistry for new class of antibiotic

University of Adelaide research has produced a potential new antibiotic which could help in the battle against bacterial resistance to antibiotics.

The potential new antibiotic targets a bacterial enzyme critical to metabolic processes.

The compound is a protein inhibitor which binds to the enzyme (called biotin protein ligase), stopping its action and interrupting the life cycle of the bacteria.

"Existing antibiotics target the bacterial cell membranes but this potential new antibiotic operates in a completely different way," says Professor Andrew Abell, project leader and Acting Head of the University's School of Chemistry and Physics.

Professor Abell says the compound, although at a very early stage of development – it has not yet been tested on an animal model – has the potential to become the first of a new class of antibiotics.

"Bacteria quickly build resistance against the known classes of antibiotics and this is causing a significant global health problem," he says. "Preliminary results show that this new class of compound may be effective against a wide range of bacterial diseases, including tuberculosis which has developed a strain resistant to all known antibiotics."

Developing the new protein inhibitor involved a novel approach called 'in situ click chemistry'. A selection of small molecules, or 'precursor fragments', are presented to the bacteria in a way so that the target protein enzyme itself builds the inhibiting compound and also binds with it.

"In a sense the bacteria unwittingly chooses a compound that will stop its growth and assembles it – like building a weapon and using it against itself," says Professor Abell. "We've gone a step further to specifically engineer the enzyme so that it builds the best and most potent weapon."

"Our results are promising. We've made the compounds; we know they bind and inhibit this enzyme and we've shown they stop the growth of a range of bacteria in the laboratory. The next critical step will be investigating their efficacy in an animal model."

"Thanks to this new approach what might have taken a year or more with a range of sequential experiments, we can now do in one single experiment," Professor Abell says.

The research has been published in the journal Chemical Science and is in collaboration with researchers at Monash University and Adelaide's Women's and Children's Hospital.

Professor Andrew Abell | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Here comes the long-sought-after iron-munching microbe
25.10.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für marine Mikrobiologie

nachricht Novel method to benchmark and improve the performance of protein measumeasurement techniques
25.10.2016 | Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

First-time reconstruction of infectious bat influenza viruses

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Novel method to benchmark and improve the performance of protein measumeasurement techniques

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Amazon rain helps make more rain

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>