Research Projects (Third party funds)


Development of novel inhibitors targeting the β-sliding clamp DnaN

Antibacterial drugs targeting essential multi-enzyme complexes are less prone to resistance development, since their malfunctioning is hard to bypass. In this context, the bacterial replisome machinery, which consists of at least twelve interacting enzymes that are highly conserved in bacteria contains several attractive and promising antibacterial targets – including the bacterial β-sliding clamp DnaN. DnaN is a crucial subunit of the DNA polymerase III holoenzyme, preventing polymerase dissociation and enhancing polymerase activity. Furthermore, the β-sliding clamp shows interactions with a variety of other enzymes involved in replication and DNA repair processes. Its important functionality in the replication process and its highly conserved structure across bacterial species and its significant structural divergence to the mammalian counterpart (PCNA) make DnaN an attractive target for the treatment of various pathogens including Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Based on the natural product griselimycin (GM), a known DnaN binder, we adopted a semisynthetic approach, which resulted in a set of GM derivatives with promising antibacterial activities. Furthermore, we identified diverse small organic molecules binding to DnaN. The optimization of the most promising compounds is ongoing.



Funding agency

BMBF - Federal Ministry of Education and Research

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