Case study Three
Next-Generation Antibiotics FOR RESISTANT BUGS
DR IVAN AHEL
without support from an industry partner such as Evotec, this project would not have progressed so rapidly to the drug discovery stage.
DR IVAN AHEL
LAB282 helps to accelerate drug discovery to treat resistant bacteria
Ivan is a group leader at the Dunn School of Pathology and a member of the Medical Sciences division. His laboratory utilises biochemistry, structural biology, cell biology and animal models to study pathways and protein functions underlying genome stability, in particular those regulated by a type of post-translational protein modification called ADP-ribosylation.
n 2016, Ivan and colleagues identified a particularly promising toxin-anti-toxin system in bacteria which may serve as a target for a next-generation antibiotic to treat multi-resistant gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria*.
When discussing his project with the LAB282 EIR Thomas Hanke, it immediately became clear that a LAB282 Award would be an excellent opportunity to test whether Ivan’s basic research data could translate into a bona fide drug discovery program. Thomas said: “Evotec’s capabilities in virtual (i.e. computational) screening and in wet-bench verification of potential hits were exactly what was needed to take the project to the next level”.
Today, the project is in full swing, aiming to identify hit compounds that will validate this novel pathway for drug development.
“I am truly excited by this project and by this collaboration and without support from an industry partner such as Evotec, this project would not have progressed so rapidly to the drug discovery stage”.
* KEY RECENT PUBLICATION
Jankevicius, G., Ariza, A., Ahel, M., and Ahel, I. (2016) The Toxin-Antitoxin System DarTG Catalyzes Reversible ADP-Ribosylation of DNA. Mol Cell 64, 1109-1116.