Strategies for the Isolation and Characterization of Antibacterial Lantibiotics

  • Daniela Jabes
  • Stefano Donadio
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 618)


Lantibiotics are biologically active peptides produced by several strains from the phyla Firmicutes and Actinobacteria. They are ribosomally synthesized and undergo posttranslational modifications that endow them with the characteristic (methyl)-lanthionine residues. As a result, lantibiotics contain a variable number of rings, each carrying one thioether link. Many lantibiotics inhibit growth of Gram-positive bacterial strains by interfering with peptidoglycan formation. Because they bind to the key intermediate lipid II at a site not affected by clinically used antibiotics, they are effective against multidrug-resistant strains. We describe a bioassay-based method suitable for finding antibacterial lantibiotics from actinomycete strains and provide selected procedures for characterizing newly discovered lantibiotics for their antibacterial properties.

Key words

Actinomycetes antibiotics bioactive peptides lantibiotics MRSA screening 



We are grateful to Wilfred van der Donk and Mike Dawson for sharing information ahead of publication.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniela Jabes
    • 1
  • Stefano Donadio
    • 1
  1. 1.NAICONS Scrl.MilanoItaly

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