Dimeric Stilbene Antibiotics Target the Bacterial Cell Wall in Drug-resistant Gram-positive Pathogens.
Biochemistry. 2020 May 15;:
Authors: Goddard T, Patel JR, Park HB, Crawford JM
The prevalence of antibiotic resistance has been increasing globally, and new antimicrobial agents are needed to address this growing problem. We previously reported that a stilbene dimer from Photorhabdus gammaproteobacteria exhibits strong activity relative to its monomer against the multidrug-resistant Gram-positive pathogens methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecalis (VRE). Here, we show that related dietary plant stilbene-derived dimers also have activity against these pathogens, and MRSA is unable to develop substantial resistance even after daily non-lethal exposure of the lead compound for a duration of three months. Through a systematic deduction process, we established the mode of action of the lead dimer, which targets the bacterial cell wall. Genome sequencing of modest resistance mutants, mass spectrometry analysis of cell wall precursors, and exogenous lipid II chemical complementation studies support the target as being lipid II itself or lipid II trafficking processes. Given the broad distribution of stilbenes in plants, including dietary plants, we anticipate that our mode of action studies here could be more broadly applicable to multipartite host-bacteria-plant interactions.
PMID: 32410442 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]