Lysozymes as Alternatives to β-lactams Antibiotics Acting on the Bacterial Wall
For a bacterium to enlarge its sacculus, there are many specialized steps that are not part of the growth strategies of plant or animal cells. Any of the biochemical steps unique to bacteria are potential targets that could be attacked by higher organisms and interfere or kill bacteria without harm to themselves. Such attacking agents would have no affect on non-bacterial organisms that produce the antibiotic substance. So antagonists have been developed over the last two billion years and are abundant in animals, plants, fungi, protozoa, and even a few bacteria. Here we briefly review the β-lactams, and then consider the lysozymes and their biology and compare the two.
KeywordsChitinase Activity Glycan Chain Antibiotic Substance Major Food Source Nasal Mucus
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