Discovery of new antibiotics from the deep oceans

University of Aberdeen

Past award

Student: Reema-Maria Shinhmar : University of Aberdeen

Year Award Started: 2015

There is an urgent need for new antibiotics to counter increasing resistance to antibiotics globally.
No new structural class of antibiotic has been discovered for 30 years. Soil bacteria have given rise
to over 70% of currently used antibiotics, but the main hurdle to further exploitation of this resource
is repeated rediscovery of known compounds. Our approach is to access extreme environments such
as deep ocean trenches to obtain bacterial species new to science to assess their ability to produce
new compound classes capable of inhibiting bacterial growth. Our preliminary evidence shows that
the discovery of new compounds from deep ocean sediments is much higher than from soil bacteria.
The scholar will work as part of a larger directed effort in the research lab to discover novel
compounds with antibiotic potential.

Research area: Infections, inflammation or immunology


Professor Marcel Jaspars
Department of Chemistry