HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Bacterial walls come tumbling down

The first detailed images of an elusive drug target on the outer wall of bacteria may provide scientists with enough new information to aid design of novel antibiotics. The drugs are much needed to treat deadly infections initiated by Staphylococcus aureus and other bacterial pathogens.

The research team, led by Natalie Strynadka, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) international research scholar at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, published its findings in the March 9, 2007, issue of the journal Science.

Penicillin and many newer antibiotics work by blocking a piece of the machinery bacteria use to construct their durable outer walls. Without these tough, protective coatings, bacteria die. The enzymatic machinery (known as PBP2) studied by Strynadka's group has two main parts: One end assembles long sugar fibers; the other end stitches them together with bits of protein to form a sturdy interlocking mesh shell.

Strynadka's team has provided a long-awaited look at the portion of the enzyme used in the first step of the biochemical pathway that initiates assembly of the sugar coating. The second step is targeted by penicillin and has been well studied.

Although scientists have spent many years identifying bacterial components whose structural features might have weaknesses that can be exploited by antibiotics, progress in turning up bona fide drug targets has been slow. The cell wall enzymes in particular have tantalized scientists, Strynadka said. "The cell wall has all the hallmarks of a great drug target," she explained. "It is essential to the survival of all bacteria. The enzymes that create the cell wall are unique to bacteria. And it is accessible; you don't have to get the antibiotics into the cell."

In their structural studies, the researchers focused on Staphylococcus aureus, a notorious human pathogen. An epidemic strain of the bacteria known as methicillin-resistant Staphy
'"/>

Contact: Jim Keeley
keeleyj@hhmi.org
301-215-8858
Howard Hughes Medical Institute
9-Mar-2007


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Better together: Bacterial endosymbionts are essential for the reproduction of a fungus
2. Bacterial response to oxidation studied as toxin barometer
3. Bacterial switch gene regulates how oceans emit sulfur into atmosphere
4. Bacterial protein shows promise in treating intestinal parasites
5. The results are in: Bacterial parasite strives for balance in host infection
6. Bacterial protein mimics host to cripple defenses
7. Say what? Bacterial conversation stoppers
8. Bacterial cooperation as a target for anti-infectious therapy
9. New insight into autoimmune disease: Bacterial infections promote recognition of self-glycolipids
10. Bacterial spread all down to chance: Some strains just the lucky ones
11. OHSU study: Bacterial switching mechanism key to survival

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:12/4/2019)... ... December 04, 2019 , ... Cartessa Aesthetics , one ... Technology for U.S. dermatologists, plastic surgeons and licensed aesthetic providers. The ... LF technology – low frequency plus a patented wavelength and power combination. Subnovii’s ...
(Date:11/27/2019)... ... November 26, 2019 , ... Smile ... Ellyn, IL practice for Invisalign® treatment. Invisalign orthodontics uses a series ... a misaligned bite, also known as malocclusion, present both functional and cosmetic concerns. ...
(Date:11/22/2019)... ... 21, 2019 , ... The inventors of a new and ... major step forward with that therapy, known as SurVaxM. MimiVax LLC principals Robert ... from Roswell Park in 2012, has entered into a China-exclusive licensing agreement for ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/4/2019)... ... December 03, 2019 , ... Absolute Antibody Ltd. , ... with the Recombinant Antibody Network (RAN), a consortium of three expert centers at ... a common goal to generate recombinant antibodies at a proteome-wide scale. Under the ...
(Date:12/4/2019)... ... December 03, 2019 , ... A new study released ... can reduce and even reverse fibrosis (scar tissue) buildup – also improves the range ... School of Medicine, was conducted on mice. , The tumor-destroying capabilities of radiation ...
(Date:12/4/2019)... ... December 04, 2019 , ... The technology at the heart ... hair, but its potential impact on the pharmaceutical industry could be massive. , “The ... and chemical engineering at South Dakota School of Mines & Technology and ...
(Date:11/27/2019)... Fla. (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2019 , ... ... spine solutions, has announced the company’s first robotic-assisted and navigated surgery in the ... London Hospital (NHS) by acclaimed spine surgeons, Dr. Syed Aftab and Dr. Alexander ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: