Scientists re-engineer antibiotic

February 9, 2006

Scientists have re-engineered an antibiotic that attacks bacteria by inhibiting cell wall synthesis, thereby significantly increasing its effectiveness.

The scientists replaced a single atom from the molecular structure of vancomycin aglycon, a glycopeptide antibiotic. In recent years, a number of the most common strains of enterococci have become resistant to vancomycin.

The re-engineering effort could help make the drug more effective in treating infections produced by vancomycin resistance enterococci, a serious and growing problem in the nation's hospitals.

"The continued rise of vancomycin-resistant infection poses a serious threat to hospital patients in the United States and around the world," said Professor Dale Boger of the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif.

The study, published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, was conducted by Brendan Crowley, a doctoral candidate at Scripps Research's Kellogg School of Science and Technology, and Boger.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Getting the lead out

Related Stories

Getting the lead out

September 22, 2015

Caltech geochemist Clair Patterson (1922–1995) helped galvanize the environmental movement 50 years ago when he announced that highly toxic lead could be found essentially everywhere on Earth, including in our own bodies—and ...

Limit short-term climate warming with cleaner air

February 23, 2011

An assessment report to be released this week by the United Nations Environment Program and the World Meteorological Organization shows that reducing emissions of two common air pollutants -- black carbon and gases integral ...

Recommended for you

On soft ground? Tread lightly to stay fast

October 8, 2015

These findings, reported today, Friday 9th October, in the journal Bioinspiration & Biomechanics, offer a new insight into how animals respond to different terrain, and how robots can learn from them.

Ancient genome from Africa sequenced for the first time

October 8, 2015

The first ancient human genome from Africa to be sequenced has revealed that a wave of migration back into Africa from Western Eurasia around 3,000 years ago was up to twice as significant as previously thought, and affected ...

Blue skies, frozen water detected on Pluto

October 8, 2015

Pluto has blue skies and patches of frozen water, according to the latest data out Thursday from NASA's unmanned New Horizons probe, which made a historic flyby of the dwarf planet in July.

New method facilitates research on fuel cell catalysts

October 8, 2015

While the cleaning of car exhausts is among the best known applications of catalytic processes, it is only the tip of the iceberg. Practically the entire chemical industry relies on catalytic reactions. Therefore, catalyst ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.