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Researchers unravel the elusive source of sulfur in an antibiotic

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Posted January 16, 2015

A team of researchers working at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Shanghai has for the first time found the source of sulfur atoms in lincomycin A, a lincosamide widely used as an antibiotic agent. In their paper published in the journalNature, the team describes their research efforts and results. Charles Melancon with the University of New Mexico outlines and comments on the work done by the team in the same journal issue.

lincomycin

Ball-and-stick model of lincomycin. Credit: Jynto/Wikipedia

As Melancon notes, there are a host of molecules vital for biological processes that have sulfur as a component—their metabolic origins can be predicted as a matter of course. Sulfur atoms on the other hand have been much more difficult to predict. Overcoming such obstacles for some molecules could have benefits such as helping to develop new medicines. In this new effort the researchers set their sights on lincomycin A, an antibacterial agent that has been used to treat Gram-positive bacterial infections for many years.

Read more at: Phys.org

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