Arti Walker 
Anti-telomerase inhibitors as Potential Novel Antibiotics

Increasing resistance by certain bacterial species has made it imperative that novel antibiotics be tested and used to help alleviate the rise of resistance to penicillin-based antibiotics. The most virulent strain of resistant bacteria that is commonly acquired via a nosocomial infection (one that is acquired while in the hospital), is Multi-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA). The main focus of our experiment has been to test known telomerase inhibitors and their derivates for potential antimicrobial activity. Telomerase is an enzyme that catalyzes the elongation of the telomeres, the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes. Disk Diffusion tests, along with tests for the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) when appropriate, were preformed on the following organisms: Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Streptococcus pyogenes, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Enterococcus faecalis, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Micrococcus leuteus, Proteus vulgaris, Aspergillus fumigatus, Candida albicans, Candida parapsilosis, Candida krusei, Candida glabrata and Mycobacterium smegmatis. Of the six telomerase derivatives tested, one compound, BIBR1532 {(E)-2-(3-(naphthalene-2-yl)but-2enamido)benzoic acid}, showed inhibition against S. aureus, S. pneumoniae, M. leuteus, and B. subtilis. Initial tests for MIC have shown it ranging from 0.157mg/ml-0.63 mg/ml (for all organisms). Since BIBR1532 inhibited the growth of normal S. aureus, it is likely that it will inhibit MRSA; thus this compound will be tested on MRSA. The results produced in this experiment show that it is worthwhile to continue the search for novel antibiotics. These compounds can be found in nature, or as in our case, synthetic antibiotics can already exist.

Faculty Mentor: Roderick Morgan


Arti presented at the 108th ASM General Meeting June 1-5, 2008 in Boston, MA.

Page last modified July 14, 2009