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Methods Mol Biol. 2010;618:31-45. doi: 10.1007/978-1-60761-594-1_3.

Strategies for the isolation and characterization of antibacterial lantibiotics.

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NAICONS Scrl, Milano, Italy.


Lantibiotics are biologically active peptides produced by several strains from the phyla Firmicutes and Actinobacteria. They are ribosomally synthesized and undergo posttranslational modifications that endow them with the characteristic (methyl)-lanthionine residues. As a result, lantibiotics contain a variable number of rings, each carrying one thioether link. Many lantibiotics inhibit growth of Gram-positive bacterial strains by interfering with peptidoglycan formation. Because they bind to the key intermediate lipid II at a site not affected by clinically used antibiotics, they are effective against multidrug-resistant strains. We describe a bioassay-based method suitable for finding antibacterial lantibiotics from actinomycete strains and provide selected procedures for characterizing newly discovered lantibiotics for their antibacterial properties.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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