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Old unexploited antibiotics could become tomorrow’s antibacterial drug (2018-02-13)

University of Leeds biological scientists and chemists are re-examining old compounds to see whether they could still combat increasingly resistant bacteria.

Of the thousands of natural product antibiotics discovered to date, only a handful have been developed for the treatment of bacterial infection.

The clinically unexploited majority likely include compounds with untapped potential as antibacterial drugs, and in view of the ever-growing unmet medical need for such agents, warrant systematic re-evaluation.

No novel drug class effective against the problematic ESKAPE pathogens (Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter species) has emerged to reach the clinic.

By studying compounds that have already shown antibacterial properties, the scientists say there is scope for a potential fast-track through the challenging early stages of drug discovery.

For more information
Revisiting unexploited antibiotics in search of new antibacterial drug candidates: the case of ?-actinorhodin

Old antibiotic compounds could become tomorrow’s life-saving drugs