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Unique fungal collection could hold key to future antibiotics
Date:1/22/2008

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Professor Peter Bramley and Dr Paul Fraser in the School of Biological Sciences at Royal Holloway and Dr Trevor Nicholls, CEO and Dr Joan Kelley Executive Director of CABI are managing the project. Professor Bramley and Dr Frasers extensive experience in molecular biology and analytical methodologies will be applied to state-of-the-art screening techniques for the discovery of new compounds and the manipulation, recombination and expression of their biosynthetic pathways to bioengineer new, related compounds. Dr Nicholls experience in the biotechnology industry and Dr Kelleys expertise and knowledge of mycology and biodiversity will direct the research to identify strains which are likely to be more biochemically diverse and commercially valuable for screening.

Professor Bramley commented, This joint initiative lays the foundations for a long term collaboration with potential strategic benefits, both research and commercial. A major focus will be the search for new antibiotics and nutraceuticals, for which there is now increasing commercial, nutritional and medical demand.

Dr Trevor Nicholls, CEO CABI added, This is a really exciting partnership and we are looking forward to working with the expertise of the scientists at Royal Holloway. We are hopeful that our collaboration will prove the winning formula for discovering new drugs to fight cancers, diseases and resistant strains of infections such as MRSA.

The joint facility is located in the Royal Holloways School of Biosciences and houses a new state-of-the-art mass spectrometer. As part of this collaboration, two technicians will be employed and a PhD studentship funded.

Royal Holloway has also obtained early stage seed fund investment from the London Development Agency backed WestFocus PARK Fund, to commercialise any potential new discoveries emerging from this project. The project team will work closely with the Research & Enterprise department at Royal H
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Contact: Lynsey Sterrey
l.sterrey@cabi.org
44-014-918-29361
CABI
Source:Eurekalert

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