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Open AccessArticle

A Novel Antibiotic Mechanism of l-Cyclopropylalanine Blocking the Biosynthetic Pathway of Essential Amino Acid l-Leucine

1
Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Henan Agricultural University, Zhengzhou 450002, China
2
Department of Microbiology, Henan Agricultural University, Zhengzhou 450002, China
3
National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, NSTDA, Pathum Thani 12120, Thailand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Molecules 2017, 22(12), 2224; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules22122224
Received: 14 November 2017 / Revised: 11 December 2017 / Accepted: 12 December 2017 / Published: 14 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Natural Products Chemistry)
The unusual amino acid l-cyclopropylalanine was isolated from the mushroom Amanita virgineoides after detection in an anti-fungal screening test. l-Cyclopropylalanine was found to exhibit broad-spectrum inhibition against fungi and bacteria. The anti-fungal activity was found to be abolished in the presence of the amino acid l-leucine, but not any other amino acids, indicating that l-cyclopropylalanine may block the biosynthesis of the essential amino acid l-leucine, thereby inhibiting fungal and bacteria growth. Further biochemical studies found l-cyclopropylalanine indeed inhibits α-isopropylmalate synthase (α-IMPS), the enzyme that catalyzes the rate-limiting step in the biosynthetic pathway of l-leucine. Inhibition of essential l-leucine synthesis in fungal and bacteria organisms, a pathway absent in host organisms such as humans, may represent a novel antibiotic mechanism to counter the ever-increasing problem of drug resistance to existing antibiotics. View Full-Text
Keywords: l-cyclopropylalanine; anti-fungal activity; α-isopropylmalate synthase; natural antibiotics l-cyclopropylalanine; anti-fungal activity; α-isopropylmalate synthase; natural antibiotics
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ma, B.; Shen, J.; Yindeeyoungyeon, W.; Ruan, Y. A Novel Antibiotic Mechanism of l-Cyclopropylalanine Blocking the Biosynthetic Pathway of Essential Amino Acid l-Leucine. Molecules 2017, 22, 2224.

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