Old and modern antibiotic structures with potential for today’s infections


Due to the lack of new antibiotics with efficacy against the ESKAPE and other resistant microbes, coupled to the demise of major pharmaceutical company antibiotic discovery programs, due to a number of factors but mainly ROI calculations and the lack of efficacy of combinatorial chemistry as a substitute, the search for novel antibiotics may well have moved to the utilization of older structures with significant synthetic chemistry input. This short review demonstrates how modern synthetic chemistry, when applied to either modification of current resistant antibiotics such as glycopeptides, or production of novel peptidic agents based on natural product sourced antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and other potential initial peptide-based agents from genomic searches and baiting techniques, have produced active agents of significant utility. In addition, synthetic chemistry practitioners have now shown that they can produce bioactive molecules of greater than 800 Daltons in kilogram quantities under cGMP conditions.


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