HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Joining forces

The "resistance movement" founded by bacteria to combat antibiotics may be losing ground. By combining key properties of two different types of weapons used by the innate defense systems of organisms, a team of scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science has managed to design a more powerful weapon, hoping that this will provide a basis for novel and more effective antibiotics.

The first is a "magnetic" weapon a natural antibiotic produced by all organisms. Because these antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are positively charged, they are attracted to the bacteria's negatively charged surface like a magnet, where they can then exert their antibacterial effects. The second, "detergent-like" weapon called a lipopeptide is produced only by bacteria and fungi which, due to a negative charge, target mainly fungi. This weapon contains a fatty acid chain that, like similar chains in soap which dissolve dirt and oils, breaks down the fatty membranes of the fungi.

As reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), Prof. Yechiel Shai and Ph.D. students Arik Makovitzki and Dorit Avrahami of the Biological Chemistry Department have succeeded in combining the properties of AMPs with lipopeptides resulting in a synthetic lipopeptide that has both a positive charge and the soap-like ability to dissolve oils.

By altering the length of the fatty acid chains and the sequence of positively charged amino acids, they were able to create an array of weapons. Some are active against both bacteria and fungi, while others target just one or the other. And, as if this was not enough, they managed to design these new synthetic peptides (protein fragments) to contain only four amino acids, as opposed to the 12 50 found in their natural forms.

These findings will hopefully open up a whole range of potential applications. The short length of the synthetic peptide makes it attractive for drug design as it would be both easier
'"/>

Contact: Jennifer Manning
jennifer@acwis.org
212-895-7952
American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science
28-Dec-2006


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Joining hands to solve a DNA replication problem
2. Wild weather forces farmers to adapt
3. Sleep enforces the temporal sequence in memory
4. Arizona State University and Mayo Clinic join forces to develop cancer vaccine
5. Feinstein Institute and Cold Spring Harbor Lab join forces, seek manic depression genes
6. Conservative forces hampering progress in sexual and reproductive health
7. New genetic analysis forces re-draw of insect family tree
8. Genetic research at Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh reinforces theory of evolution
9. Texas A&M system agencies join forces to hasten bioenergy revolution
10. Salk and Stanford teams join forces to reveal two paths of neurodegeneration
11. Evolutionary forces explain why women live longer than men

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


(Date:12/15/2016)... , Dec. 15, 2016 Advancements ... experience, health wellness and wellbeing (HWW), and ... in three new passenger vehicles begin to ... gesture recognition, heart beat monitoring, brain wave ... facial monitoring, and pulse detection. These will ...
(Date:12/12/2016)... 2016  Researchers at Trinity College, Dublin, are ... combining the material with Silly Putty. The mixture (known ... able to sense pulse, blood pressure, respiration, and ... The research team,s findings were published ... http://science.sciencemag.org/content/354/6317/1257 ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... India , December 7, 2016 According to a ... Machine Learning), Software Tool (Facial Expression, Voice Recognition), Service, Application Area, End User, ... is estimated to grow from USD 6.72 Billion in 2016 to USD 36.07 ... Continue Reading ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... ... January 19, 2017 , ... Genedata, ... (R&D), today announced the launch of Data Science Services , offering ... evolving field of precision medicine. , Data Science Services allows pharmaceutical ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... and GAITHERSBURG, Md. ... MKT: PIP) and Altimmune, Inc., a privately-held immunotherapeutics ... of a definitive agreement for the merger of ... current investors include Novartis Venture Fund, HealthCap, Truffle ... be a fully-integrated and diversified immunotherapeutics company with ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... AquaBounty Technologies, Inc. (AIM: ABTU; NASDAQ: AQB), ... and a majority-owned subsidiary of Intrexon Corporation (NYSE: ... listing of its common shares on the NASDAQ Stock ... "AquaBounty,s listing on NASDAQ represents an important milestone ... the U.S. markets as we advance plans for commercial ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... Ca (PRWEB) , ... January 18, 2017 , ... ... events for tech innovators, engineers, and scientists from around the world, was today ... News. The awards program is based entirely on merit and decided upon by ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: