What is it about?

Finding new antibiotics with a novel mode of action is important since many antibiotics are failing and resistant bacteria a very hard to treat. Our hypothesis was that each mode of action of killing a bacteria will induce molecular changes in the bacteria, caused by the antibiotic itself and/or the initiation of the bacteria's response to the antibiotic. In order to study the molecular changes, we have used a technique called BioSAXS. We have shown that indeed it is possible to classify antimicrobial substances according to the mode of action.

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Why is it important?

This is important since up to that time, no high through method existed to study the mode of action and pave the way for screening compounds not only for their antimicrobial effect but also for their modes of action. New modes of action against drug-resistant bacteria are urgently needed.

Perspectives

I hope that this method is picked up by the research community and uses the great power it has to develop new antimicrobial compounds.

Prof Kai Hilpert
St Georges University of London

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Use of small-angle X-ray scattering to resolve intracellular structure changes ofEscherichia colicells induced by antibiotic treatment, Journal of Applied Crystallography, December 2016, International Union of Crystallography, DOI: 10.1107/s1600576716018562.
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