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Expanding the antibacterial selectivity of polyether ionophore antibiotics through diversity-focused semisynthesis

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Polyether ionophores are complex natural products capable of transporting cations across biological membranes. Many polyether ionophores possess potent antimicrobial activity and a few selected compounds have the ability to target aggressive cancer cells. Nevertheless, ionophore function is believed to be associated with idiosyncratic cellular toxicity and, consequently, human clinical development has not been pursued. Here, we demonstrate that structurally novel polyether ionophores can be efficiently constructed by recycling components of highly abundant polyethers to afford analogues with enhanced antibacterial selectivity compared to a panel of natural polyether ionophores. We used classic degradation reactions of the natural polyethers lasalocid and monensin and combined the resulting fragments with building blocks provided by total synthesis, including halogen-functionalized tetronic acids as cation-binding groups. Our results suggest that structural optimization of polyether ionophores is possible and that this area represents a potential opportunity for future methodological innovation. [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

TidsskriftNature Chemistry
Sider (fra-til)47-55
Antal sider9
StatusUdgivet - jan. 2021

Bibliografisk note

Funding Information:
This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement number 865738). Financial support from the Carlsberg Foundation (grant CF17-0800), Novo Nordisk Foundation (grant NNF19OC0054782) and Independent Research Fund Denmark (grants 9040-00117B and 6110-00600B) is acknowledged. We thank E. Jung and A. Johnbeck for technical assistance with the organic syntheses, A. Bodholt Nielsen for technical assistance with NMR spectroscopy, and I.C. Stensgaard Jensen for technical assistance with microbiology.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited.

Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

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