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Mycolic acids: deciphering and targeting the Achilles' heel of the tubercle bacillus.

Nataraj, V, Varela, C, Javid, A, Singh, A, Besra, GS and Bhatt, A (2015) Mycolic acids: deciphering and targeting the Achilles' heel of the tubercle bacillus. Mol Microbiol, 98 (1). pp. 7-16.

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Mycolic acids are unique long chain fatty acids found in the lipid-rich cell walls of mycobacteria including the tubercle bacillus Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Essential for viability and virulence, enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of mycolic acids represent novel targets for drug development. This is particularly relevant to the impact on global health given the rise of multidrug resistant and extensively drug resistant strains of M. tuberculosis. In this review, we discuss recent advances in our understanding of how mycolic acid are synthesised, especially the potential role of specialised fatty acid synthase complexes. Also, we examine the role of a recently reported mycolic acid transporter MmpL3 with reference to several reports of the targeting of this transporter by diverse compounds with anti-M. tuberculosis activity. Additionally, we consider recent findings that place mycolic acid biosynthesis in the context of the cell biology of the bacterium, viz its localisation and co-ordination with the bacterial cytoskeleton, and its role beyond maintaining cell envelope integrity.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Surrey research (other units)
Authors :
Varela, C
Javid, A
Singh, A
Besra, GS
Bhatt, A
Date : October 2015
DOI : 10.1111/mmi.13101
Uncontrolled Keywords : Antitubercular Agents, Bacterial Proteins, Drug Discovery, Fatty Acid Synthases, Membrane Transport Proteins, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Mycolic Acids, Tuberculosis, Virulence
Related URLs :
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 17 May 2017 10:32
Last Modified : 24 Jan 2020 19:32

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