The Microbiome: A Reservoir to Discover New Antimicrobials Agents.

Sébastien Boutin, Alexander H. Dalpke


Nature offered mankind the first golden era of discovery of novel antimicrobials based on the ability of eukaryotes or micro-organisms to produce such compounds. The microbial world proved to be a huge reservoir of such antimicrobial compounds which play important functional roles in every environment. However, most of those organisms are still uncultivable in a classical way, and therefore, the use of extended culture or DNA based methods (metagenomics) to discover novel compounds promises usefulness. In the past decades, the advances in next-generation sequencing and bioinformatics revealed the enormous diversity of the microbial worlds and the functional repertoire available for studies. Thus, data-mining becomes of particular interest in the context of the increased need for new antibiotics due to antimicrobial resistance and the rush in antimicrobial discovery. In this review, an overview of principles will be presented to discover new natural compounds from the microbiome. We describe culture-based and culture-independent (metagenomic) approaches that have been developed to identify new antimicrobials and the input of those methods in the field as well as their limitations.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCurrent Topics in Medicinal Chemistry
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Infection and Inflammation Research (ZIEL)

DFG Research Classification Scheme

  • 204-03 Medical Microbiology and Mycology, Hygiene, Molecular Infection Biology

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