HIPS Talk: “Chemical strategies to fight multi-resistant bacteria”

Thursday, November 11, 2021, at 10:00 CET s.t. via YouTube

Prof. Dr. Stephan Sieber (Target Identification of Natural Products, TU München, Germany) will give a presentation entitled
“Chemical strategies to fight multi-resistant bacteria”

When?: Thursday, November 11, 2021, 10:00 CET
Where?: via YouTube: Helmholtz HIPS - YouTube
Host: Prof. Dr. Rolf Müller

Guests are welcome!

Multiresistant bacterial pathogens such as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) are responsible for a variety of severe infections that pose a significant threat to global health. To approach this challenge new chemical entities with an unprecedented mode of action are desperately needed. This presentation will cover our latest efforts to identify new anti-bacterial targets and corresponding chemical inhibitors. A proteome mining approach will be presented to identify cofactor-dependent enzymes as novel antibiotic targets. Small molecule cofactor mimics infiltrate the bacterial metabolic machinery leading to their incorporation in PLP-dependent enzymes. Their analysis via mass-spectrometry revealed the function of uncharacterized proteins in important bacterial pathways as well as the mechanism of action of known antibiotics.

In a separate approach we identified a new compound class that effectively kills MRSA strains. Chemical synthesis of improved derivatives led to the identification of an active molecule with nanomolar potency and suitable metabolic stability. Its mode of action was investigated by affinity based protein profiling (AfBPP). The compound stimulates a signal peptidase correlating with enhanced secretion of extracellular proteins. These included essential cell-wall remodeling enzymes whose dysregulation likely explains the associated antibiotic effects. Strikingly, the compound turned out to be a promising therapeutic candidate as it did not induce in vitro resistance, exhibited optimal per oral bioavailibility and in vivo efficacy in a mouse infection model.

Academic positions
Since 2009: Full Professor for Organic Chemistry (OCII), Technical Univ. Munich (TUM), Germany
Since 2019: Assoc. Member of the Helmholtz-Institute for Pharmaceutical Research Saarland, Saarbrücken, Germany

Education and Professional Experience
2006 – 2009: Independent researcher, mentor Prof. Carell, Ludwig-Maximilian University of Munich, Germany
2004 – 2006: Post-Doc with Prof. Cravatt, Scripps Research Inst., La Lolla, USA
2001 – 2004: PhD with Prof. Marahiel (Univ. Marburg) and Prof. Walsh (Harvard Med. School, Bosten, USA)
Dissertation: “Nonribosomal Peptide Synthetases: Quaternary Structure and Chemoenzymatic Synthesis of Macrocyclic Peptides“

A few of his Awards
2020: Merck Future Insight Prize for antibacterial research
2020: Klaus-Grohe-Prize of the GDCh for med. Chem. 
2016: Klung-Wilhelmy-Research prize for chemistry
2016 & 2010: ERC Consolidator & ERC Starting grant

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