Navigation Links
Synthetic peptoids hold forth promise for new antibiotics
Date:3/7/2008

Drug-resistant bacterial infections are a growing concern, and much research has been devoted to finding new classes of antibiotics to fight them.

Stanford researchers may have found some answers in peptoids, a class of manmade molecules very similar to natural proteins that play an important role in the human immune system.

"Peptoids could be an entirely new class of antibiotic drugs, which would be hugely important," said Annelise Barron, associate professor of bioengineering at Stanford and senior author of a paper describing the research in the Feb. 26 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Natural peptides

Anti-microbial peptides are evolutionarily ancient infection fighters found in organisms from grasses to amphibians to humans. In the human body, the peptides show up in the mouth, lungs and intestines, and in body fluids like sweat and tears. Anti-microbial peptides target a variety of pathogens and generally kill by punching holes in the invaders' cell membranes.

"You can think of these types of antibiotics as the body's 'land mines' against invading pathogens," Barron said.

Because of this, bacterial resistance to the peptides is rarely observed. Bacteria can thwart other anti-microbial drugs by inactivating the drug, pumping it out of the cell, altering the drug's binding site so it is no longer recognized or working around the specific cell part attacked by the drug.

But it is much tougher for bacteria to develop resistance to the damage caused by anti-microbial peptides. "The bacteria can't fundamentally alter their entire outer membrane," Barron said.

Such peptides seem like a natural choice for new antibiotics. One type showed promise in the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers. Unfortunately, their applicability has been limited so far to topical use; natural peptides are quickly degraded in the stomach. Thus, a peptide-based drug must be injected rather than swallowed. The peptides are quickly broken down in the bloodstream as well, and must therefore be injected in high concentrations.

Promise of peptoids

Peptoids are synthetic molecules -- oligomers -- with structures that are similar to those of anti-microbial peptides, and offer the potential to overcome many of the problems associated with the natural molecules. Peptoids are much less susceptible to degradation in the stomach and bloodstream than peptides, so they will last longer in the body. They are also less expensive to produce than peptides, Barron said.

Barron and her colleagues had these peptoids tested against six strains of pathogenic bacteria. The peptoids showed anti-bacterial properties almost identical to those of the natural peptides.

"They did beautifully," Barron said. "They appear to be broad-spectrum antibiotics that interact and interfere with bacterial cell membranes analogously to the way these peptides do."

To see if the peptoids would be harmful to human cells, the researchers combined them with human red blood cells in the laboratory. They also mixed them with mammalian lung cells and skin cells. At their active concentrations, the peptoids left the mammalian cells unharmed.

Barron said that the next step is testing the peptoids in animal models of bacterial infection, and studies with mice are under way with collaborators.

"It's an exciting area," she said. "Society desperately needs new antibiotics, and I think this family of molecules has huge clinical promise."


'/>"/>

Contact: Louis Bergeron
louisb3@stanford.edu
650-725-1944
Stanford University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Duramed Launches New Indication for ENJUVIA(TM) (Synthetic Conjugated Estrogens, B) at North American Menopause Society Annual Meeting
2. Varian, Inc. Offers New Products for the Rapid Purification of Synthetic Oligonucleotides.
3. Collagen Matrix, Inc. Receives FDA 510(k) Clearance for SynOss(TM) Synthetic Mineral Bone Graft Material
4. New understanding of how big molecules bind will lead to better drugs, synthetic organic materials
5. Boise(R) BEWARE(TM) Meets New Federal Guidelines Set Forth by Medicaid
6. New study shows promise in reducing surgical risks associated with surgical bleeding
7. New Heart Pump Shows Promise in Trial
8. Blood-flow detector software show promise in preventing brain damage
9. The 7 Key Questions About the Schwarzenegger/Nunez Health Care Compromise
10. Antidepressant shows early promise in treating agitation and psychotic symptoms of dementia
11. Genetics Hold Promise, Challenges for Cancer Care
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method for ... is one of the first doctors to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are substances ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... A recent ... that most people are unfamiliar with. The article goes on to state that individuals ... also many of these less common operations such as calf and cheek reduction. The ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was ... his family verbally and physically. , “When something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” ... He would throw rocks at my other children and say he was going to kill ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Amanda Cheng, an ... Dr. Cheng has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, including robotic Suresmile ... orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic treatment. It can ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... People across the U.S. are sharpening ... Talker Award, an essay contest in which patients and their families pay tribute to ... at the 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference (AEC) this ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/26/2016)... , June 27, 2016 Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc ... period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, ... of Celator Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ("Celator"; Nasdaq: CPXX ... (Eastern Daylight Time). As previously announced on ... a definitive merger agreement under which Jazz Pharmaceuticals has ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016  Collagen Matrix, Inc., ("Collagen Matrix") the ... of collagen and mineral based medical devices for ... Bill Messer has joined the company as ... the growing portfolio of oral surgery, neurosurgery, orthopaedic ... joins the Collagen Matrix executive team as an ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 ... of the "Structural Electronics 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, ... In-Mold Electronics, Smart Skin, ... Photovoltaics Structural electronics involves electronic ... load-bearing, protective structures, replacing dumb structures such as ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: