Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers Identify a New Mechanism of TB Drug Resistance

13.06.2013
Pyrazinamide (PZA)—a frontline tuberculosis (TB) drug—kills dormant persister bacteria and plays a critical role in shortening TB therapy. PZA is used for treating both drug susceptible and multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) but resistance to PZA occurs frequently and can compromise treatment.

A recent study, led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Huashan Hospital, Fudan University, has identified a new mechanism for PZA-resistance, which provides new insight into the how this mysterious drug works. The study is available online June 12 in the journal Emerging Microbes and Infections.

Previously, the Johns Hopkins group identified mutations in the pncA gene and the rpsA gene as the primary causes for PZA resistance. According to the study authors, resistance to PZA is most commonly caused by mutations in the pncA gene encoding enzyme nicotinamidase/pyrazinamidase, which converts the prodrug PZA to the active form pyrazinoic acid (POA), and sometimes associated with mutations in the drug target RpsA (ribosomal protein S1). The active form of PZA, POA, interacts chemically with RpsA to block the trans-translation process, which is essential for bacterium’s survival under stress conditions.

However, for unknown reasons, some PZA-resistant TB bacteria lack mutations in pncA or rpsA. The current study suggests that mutations in the panD gene may also be involved. PanD encodes aspartate decarboxylase, which is involved in synthesis of the amino acid â-alanine, a precursor for pantothenate (which is vitamin B5) and co-enzyme A biosynthesis. The panD mutations were identified not only in mutants isolated from in vitro but also in clinical isolates such as in the naturally PZA-resistant bacterium M. canettii strain and in a PZA-resistant MDR-TB strain.

“There is significant recent interest in understanding PZA, since it is the only TB drug that cannot be replaced without compromising the efficacy of the therapy. It’s indispensible,” said Ying Zhang, MD, PhD, senior author of the study and professor in the Bloomberg School’s W. Harry Feinstone Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology. “The process of identifying the correct resistance mutations was quite tedious and took about two years to complete. However, the work led to the identification of a potential new mechanism of PZA resistance.”

While more study is needed, Zhang and his colleagues believe panD could be a potential target for new antibiotic therapies.

The study was conducted in collaboration with researchers Wenhong Zhang and Jiazhen Chen from Fudan University. The authors of “Mutations in panD encoding aspartate decarboxylase are associated with pyrazinamide resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis” are Shuo Zhang, Jiazhen Chen, Wanliang Shi, Wei Liu, Wenhong Zhang, and Ying Zhang.

Funding for the research was provided by the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, and the Major Project of the Twelfth Five-Year Plan, China.

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health media contact: Tim Parsons at 410-955-7619 or tmparson@jhsph.edu.

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
615 N. Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21205
Contact Us Directions & Maps Calendars Offices &
Services Online Learning &
Courses Careers Accreditation Web Policies Feedback

Tim Parsons | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.jhsph.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Polymers Based on Boron?
18.01.2018 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht Bioengineered soft microfibers improve T-cell production
18.01.2018 | Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

Im Focus: A thermometer for the oceans

Measurement of noble gases in Antarctic ice cores

The oceans are the largest global heat reservoir. As a result of man-made global warming, the temperature in the global climate system increases; around 90% of...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Polymers Based on Boron?

18.01.2018 | Life Sciences

Bioengineered soft microfibers improve T-cell production

18.01.2018 | Life Sciences

World’s oldest known oxygen oasis discovered

18.01.2018 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>