Chemists in the College of Arts and Sciences have figured out how to turn bacterial molecules into potential drug molecules.
Yan-Yeung Luk, associate professor of chemistry, and his research team have published their findings in ChemBioChem (John Wiley & Sons, 2015), explaining how they have created molecules that mimic and dominate toxic ones secreted by bacteria.
The implications for the study of biology and pharmacology are said to be enormous.
“Using toxic molecules to develop therapeutic agents, such as a vaccine, is not easy,” says Luk, who works at the interface of organic chemistry and the life sciences. “We’re just beginning to understand how some molecules—synthetic or naturally occurring—control the activities of bacteria. This will help us develop, among other things, drugs with many different applications.”
The Luk Research Group is focusing its attention on Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a microbe that causes many diseases and illnesses, including cystic fibrosis. Like other bacteria, P. aeruginosa produces a range of molecules that guides various activities. Among these molecules are rhamnolipids, which are made up of rhamnose sugar rings and fatty acids, and are able to reduce the surface tension of water. While rhamnolipids have been studied for decades, scientists don’t really know how they affect bacterial behavior.
Enter Luk, who, along with his research team, designs molecules that control such behavior. Their latest creation is a class of molecules called synthetic disaccharide derivatives (DSDs), which take over the chemical signaling of rhamnolipids to control activities such as biofilm formation, bacterial adhesion and swarming motility.
Lead author Nischal Singh G’15 and the rest of the Luk team have also discovered a subset of DSDs that dominates the function of rhamnolipids, and has demonstrated capacity for a range of new, unexpected bioactivities. The latter includes phenotypic switching, in which bacteria abandon their original phenotypes to “change” into two different phenotypes, and bacterial adhesion, considered the first step in colonization and biofilm formation.
“Biologists know how rhamnopilids are made by bacteria, and can knock out their production, but they don’t fully understand how rhamnolipids work—specifically, how they control different types of bacterial activities,” Luk says.
In addition to being non-toxic and biodegradable, rhamnolipids can withstand extreme temperatures, salinity and acidity. As a result, they have many useful chemical and biological properties.
Luk says that developing rhamnolipids into therapeutic agents has been speculated about for years, but without successful results. He hopes his group’s synthetic rhamnolipids approach is the exception. After designing and synthesizing two chemical libraries, or collections, of molecules, Luk’s third one contained two DSDs whose structures dominated the functions of rhamnolipids, offering the potential for many applications. It is from these two molecules that Luk’s team is making new ones.
The Latest on: Rhamnolipids
via Google News
The Latest on: Rhamnolipids
- Global Microbial Biosurfactants Market: Size,Share,Analysis,Regional Outlook and Forecast 2020-2025on January 18, 2020 at 6:55 pm
This analysis can help you expand your business by targeting qualified niche markets. By Type, Microbial Biosurfactants market has been segmented into Rhamnolipids, Sophorolipids, Mannosylerythritol ...
- Rhamnolipids Market to Make Great Impact in near Future by 2018-2026on January 1, 2020 at 4:00 pm
Rhamnolipids are a class of biosurfactants which contain rhamnose as the sugar moiety connected to β-hydroxylated fatty acid chains. Rhamnolipids are mainly produced by pathogens called ...
- The production of rhamnolipid biosurfactant by Pseudomonas aeruginosa growing in biofilms.on January 30, 2018 at 3:57 pm
However, P. aeruginosa is a human pathogen and the rhamnolipids also play an important role in pathogenicity including the development of biofilms. Most of the research on production of the ...
- Investigation of the diversity and role of rhamnosyltransferase enzymes in rhamnolipid synthesis in bacteria.on January 30, 2018 at 3:57 pm
Rhamnolipids have been identified as microbial biosurfactants with huge potential for industrial exploitation, however, the best known producer, Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a human pathogen and ...
- Biosurfactants Market to Exceed $2.7 bn by 2024: Global Market Insights, Inc. - MarketWatchon January 8, 2018 at 10:00 pm
Browse key industry insights spread across 175 pages with 166 market data tables & 31 figures & charts from the report, "Biosurfactants Market Size By Product (Sophorolipids, Rhamnolipids ...
- Biosurfactants Market, 2022 - Increasing Demand for Green Solutionson January 2, 2018 at 9:20 am
The "Biosurfactants Market by Type (Glycolipids (Sophorolipids, Rhamnolipids), Lipopeptides, Phospholipids, Polymeric Biosurfactants), Application (Detergents, Personal Care, Agricultural Chemicals, ...
- Biosurfactants Market worth over $2.6bn by 2023: Global Market Insights, Inc.on May 24, 2017 at 5:30 am
The global report “Biosurfactants Market Size By Product (Sophorolipids, Rhamnolipids, Alkyl Polyglucosides [APG], Methyl Ethyl Sulfonates [MES], Sucrose Esters, Sorbitan Esters), By Application ...
- Bacterial Molecules Transformed into Novel Potential Drugson November 15, 2015 at 11:56 pm
The Luk Research Group, which published its study (“Chemical Signals of Synthetic Disaccharide Derivatives Dominate Rhamnolipids at Controlling Multiple Bacterial Activities”) in ChemBioChem ...
- New bacteria could help clean up oil spillon June 13, 2010 at 5:00 pm
The bacterium can produce non-toxic, comparatively cheap ‘rhamnolipids’, which help degrade polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) – pollutants that are one of the most harmful aspects of oil spills.
- New strain of bacteria discovered that could aid in oil spill, other environmental cleanupon June 11, 2010 at 6:10 am
Researchers have discovered a new strain of bacteria that can produce non-toxic, comparatively inexpensive "rhamnolipids," and effectively help degrade polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs – ...
via Bing News