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Antibiotic Discovery in the Genomic Era: Unlocking the Chemical Potential of Microbes

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Natural Products Chemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 July 2023) | Viewed by 533

Special Issue Editors

School of Molecular Sciences, The University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia
Interests: microbial natural products; genome mining; drug discovery; peptides; antibiotics
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, USA
Interests: microbial genome mining; natural product-based drug discovery; natural products biosynthesis

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Antibiotic resistance is one of the greatest and longest-lasting challenges to global health. There is an urgent and growing need for new antibiotic classes to maintain the advanced medical procedures we now take for granted. In the golden age of antibiotic discovery, the vast majority of new antibiotic scaffolds were discovered through cultivation of soil microorganisms. However, the chemical diversity of these easy-to-culture microorganisms seems exhausted and has led to the high rediscovery rate of known antibiotics.

In recent years, analysis of microbial genomes has increasingly uncovered the potential of microorganisms to make novel molecules, which is largely underestimated due to the silence or low expression of many biosynthetic genes. Activation or upregulation of the untapped biosynthetic potential will open up a new avenue for antibiotic discovery in the genomic era. This Special Issue aims at gathering updates and recent advances in the discovery and characterization of new antibiotics discovered from microorganisms applying advanced chemical and biological elicitation approaches, including but not limited to chemical elicitation, co-cultivation, resistance gene-directed genome mining, heterologous pathway expression, or regulator overexpression. Contributions should highlight the techniques employed to unlock the antibiotic biosynthetic potential of microorganisms and include details in the isolation, structure characterization, and antimicrobial evaluation of new antibiotics.

Dr. Zhuo Shang
Dr. Jie Li
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Antibiotic discovery 
  • Microbial secondary metabolites 
  • Genome-mining 
  • Heterologous expression 
  • Structure elucidation 
  • Mechanism of action

Published Papers

There is no accepted submissions to this special issue at this moment.
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