SciencePub: Antibiotics from the sea
Starting with the first clinical use of penicillin in 1942, bioactive small molecules produced by fungi,bacteria and plants revolutionized medical treatment of infectious diseases. It has become disturbingly evident in recent decades that the combined misuse and overuse of antibiotics has resulted in a dramatic increase in the resistance of pathogenic microbes to known compounds. Consequently, only 70 years after the first antibiotic treatment, we again face the spectre of incurable bacterial infections, now due to multidrug resistant pathogens. Concurrently, lack of financial incentive has discouraged efforts by pharmaceutical companies to discover new antibiotics. As a result, only two new classes ofantibiotics have been brought to market in the past 30 years. It is consequently widely acknowledged that there is an urgent need for new antibiotics, thus for novel lead structures to guide their development. Again, bacteria came into focus. Not only as part of the problem (pathogens), but likewise as part of the solution (antibiotic producers). However, how to identify such ‘talented producers’ among the myriads of different bacteria? Other than the classical high-throughput screening, Prof. Joglers team from the department of microbial interactions (FSU Jena) focused on hypothesis driven identification of bacterial groups that, from a (holistic) ecological perspective, are likely to produce antibiotics as they need such skills in their natural struggle for survival. They analyze such bacteria from aquatic surroundings with multiple methods to understand their biology and to develop strategies to stimulate their antibiotic production. In this talk, Prof. Jogler will give the first example how such an approach can lead to the discovery of novel molecules.
Doors will open as usual at 7 pm and the talk will start at 8 pm.
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