Scientists from the University of Birmingham, led by Professor Chris Thomas (pictured right) of the School of Biosciences, and Bristol University have discovered how marine bacteria join together two antibiotics they make independently to produce a potent chemical that can kill drug-resistant strains of the MRSA superbug.

Working with Japanese pharmaceutical company Daiichi-Sankyo, and funded by the UK Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), the researchers’ work paves the way for the creation of new hybrid antibiotics that may help to solve the growing problem of bacterial infections that are resistant to essentially all antibiotics.

Find out about research in the School of Biosciences

The research is published online in the journal PLoS ONE.

Find out more:

  • Full story on the University of Birmingham news site
  • A Natural Plasmid Uniquely Encodes Two Biosynthetic Pathways Creating a Potent Anti-MRSA Antibiotic is published in PLoS ONE. It is available online at http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0018031.