Research Fellows Directory
Mr Soumik Basu
University of Oxford
The world is in urgent need of new antibiotics. The rise of drug-resistant bacteria means that within 10-20 years even routine operations will carry a severe risk of infection. This proposal focuses on the bacterium Serratia marcescens, which causes severe infections such as those associated with catheters and is increasingly antibiotic resistant. Prof. Kleanthous’s group has identified a new class of proteins called nuclease bacteriocins within the genome of Serratia marcescens which, based on past work on related bacteria, suggests these molecules will be highly effective agents able to kill Serratia marcescens by degrading their nucleic acids. Bacteriocins are used by bacteria to kill their bacterial neighbours during competition for resources. The aim of our proposal is to produce two such molecules, known as marcescins, determine their three-dimensional structures and identify how they bind to Serratia marcescens receptor to penetrate and kill the organism.
Interests and expertise (Subject groups)