Professor Robbyn Anand | Iowa State University
Hosted by Nathan Swami
Professor Shannon Stahl | University of Wisconsin-Madison
Hosted by Professor Charlie Machan
Screening, Isolation, and Characterization of Antibiotic Natural Products
Professor Amanda Wolfe | University of North Carolina Asheville
Hosted by Professor Mike Hilinski
The increased emergence of bacterial resistance over the past two decades has greatly reduced the effectiveness of nearly all clinical antibiotics, bringing infectious disease to the forefront as a dire threat to global health. To combat these infections, new antibiotics need to be rapidly discovered, and bacterial natural products have reemerged as an abundant source of novel bioactive molecules. Herein, the isolation and evaluation of over 400 bacteria from bulk and rhizosphere soil native to western North Carolina and the southwestern U.S. in a novel and robust liquid-based high-throughput antagonism assay against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli is presented. Over 300 bacterial species were screened in monoculture, and 12% and 15% were found to produce antibiotics capable of ≥30% growth inhibition of Staphylococcus aureus or Escherichia coli respectively. 69 of those bacteria were subjected to 16s rRNA sequencing and found to be majority Pseudomonas (30%) and Serratia (17%) bacteria, and Aquitalea, Brevundimonas, Chryseobacterium, Herbaspirillum, and Microbacterium bacteria, which are currently not known to be antibiotic producers. More than 10 producing bacteria have been subjected to large scale culture and extraction techniques to isolate the produced antibiotic. One of those, a Pseudomonas sp., was found to produce the natural product pseudopyronine B, and we have further improved the antibiotic activity of this natural product through SAR evaluation of the alkyl side chains.