Evolving medicinal chemistry strategies in antibiotic discovery
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Chemical modification of synthetic or natural product antibiotic scaffolds to expand potency and spectrum and to bypass mechanisms of resistance has dominated antibiotic drug discovery and proven immensely successful. However, the inexorable evolution of drug resistance coupled with a drought in innovation in antibiotic discovery contribute to a dearth of new drugs entering to market. Better understanding of the physicochemical properties of antibiotic chemical space is required to inform new antibiotic discovery. Innovations such as the development of antibiotic adjuvants to preserve efficacy of existing drugs together with expanding antibiotic chemical diversity through synthetic biology or new techniques to mine antibiotic producing organisms, are required to bridge the growing gap between the need for new drugs and their discovery.
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