Biosynthesis of Antimicrobial Drugs

  • David Edwards


A knowledge of how antimicrobial drugs are biosynthesised is essential for the production and purification of such drugs and provides a means whereby new drugs can be synthesised chemically. All the major antibiotics in use today are produced by bacteria or fungi with the exception of small antibiotic molecules such as chloramphenicol which can be synthesised chemically. As can be seen from table 3.1, the major antibiotics are produced from a relatively few types of microorganism, the classification of which was dealt with in chapter 1.


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3.6 References and Further Reading

  1. Abraham, E. P. (ed). (1974). Biosynthesis and Enzymatic Hydrolysis of Penicillins and Cephalosporins. University of Tokyo Press, TokyoGoogle Scholar
  2. Evans, R. M. (1965). The Chemistry of the Antibiotics used in Medicine. Pergamon, LondonCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Gottlieb, D. and Shaw, P. D. (eds) (1967). Antibiotics, Vol. II, Biosynthesis. Springer-Verlag, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  4. Hammond, S. M. (1977). Biological activity of polyene antibiotics. In Progress in Medicinal Chemistry (G. P. Ellis and G. B. West, eds). Elsevier, North-Holland, Amsterdam, pp. 105–7Google Scholar
  5. Kanzaki, T. and Fujisawa, Y. (1976). Biosynthesis of cephalosporins. Adv. appl. Microbiol., 20, 159–201CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Kleinkauf, H. and Gevers, W. Non-ribosomal polypeptide synthesis. The biosynthesis of a cyclic peptide antibiotic, gramicidin S. Cold Spring Harbor Symp. quant. Biol., 34, 805–13Google Scholar
  7. Martin, J. F. (1977). Biosynthesis of polyene macrolide antibiotics. A. Rev. Microbiol., 31, 13–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Snell, J. F. (ed.) (1966). Biosynthesis of Antibiotics. Academic Press, LondonGoogle Scholar

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© David Edwards 1980

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  • David Edwards

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