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Chem Biol. 2000 May;7(5):R109-19.

Vancomycin resistance in enterococci: reprogramming of the D-ala-D-Ala ligases in bacterial peptidoglycan biosynthesis.

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Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Vancomycin binds to bacterial cell-wall intermediates to achieve its antibiotic effect. Infections of vancomycin-resistant enterococci are, however, becoming an increasing problem; the bacteria are resistant because they synthesize different cell-wall intermediates. The enzymes involved in cell-wall biosynthesis, therefore, are potential targets for combating this resistance. Recent biochemical and crystallographic results are providing mechanistic and structural details about some of these targets.

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