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Article Dans Une Revue mSystems Année : 2024

Providing insight into the mechanism of action of cationic lipidated oligomers using metabolomics

Maytham Hussein
  • Fonction : Auteur
Muhammad Bilal Hassan Mahboob
  • Fonction : Auteur
Jessica Tait
James Grace
  • Fonction : Auteur
John Quinn
  • Fonction : Auteur
Tony Velkov
  • Fonction : Auteur
Michael Whittaker
  • Fonction : Auteur
Cornelia Landersdorfer


ABSTRACT The increasing resistance of clinically relevant microbes against current commercially available antimicrobials underpins the urgent need for alternative and novel treatment strategies. Cationic lipidated oligomers (CLOs) are innovative alternatives to antimicrobial peptides and have reported antimicrobial potential. An understanding of their antimicrobial mechanism of action is required to rationally design future treatment strategies for CLOs, either in monotherapy or synergistic combinations. In the present study, metabolomics was used to investigate the potential metabolic pathways involved in the mechanisms of antibacterial activity of one CLO, C 12 -o-(BG-D)-10, which we have previously shown to be effective against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) ATCC 43300. The metabolomes of MRSA ATCC 43300 at 1, 3, and 6 h following treatment with C 12 -o-(BG-D)-10 (48 µg/mL, i.e., 3× MIC) were compared to those of the untreated controls. Our findings reveal that the studied CLO, C 12 -o-(BG-D)-10, disorganized the bacterial membrane as the first step toward its antimicrobial effect, as evidenced by marked perturbations in the bacterial membrane lipids and peptidoglycan biosynthesis observed at early time points, i.e., 1 and 3 h. Central carbon metabolism and the biosynthesis of DNA, RNA, and arginine were also vigorously perturbed, mainly at early time points. Moreover, bacterial cells were under osmotic and oxidative stress across all time points, as evident by perturbations of trehalose biosynthesis and pentose phosphate shunt. Overall, this metabolomics study has, for the first time, revealed that the antimicrobial action of C 12 -o-(BG-D)-10 may potentially stem from the dysregulation of multiple metabolic pathways. IMPORTANCE Antimicrobial resistance poses a significant challenge to healthcare systems worldwide. Novel anti-infective therapeutics are urgently needed to combat drug-resistant microorganisms. Cationic lipidated oligomers (CLOs) show promise as new antibacterial agents against Gram-positive pathogens like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Understanding their molecular mechanism(s) of antimicrobial action may help design synergistic CLO treatments along with monotherapy. Here, we describe the first metabolomics study to investigate the killing mechanism(s) of CLOs against MRSA. The results of our study indicate that the CLO, C 12 -o-(BG-D)-10, had a notable impact on the biosynthesis and organization of the bacterial cell envelope. C 12 -o-(BG-D)-10 also inhibits arginine, histidine, central carbon metabolism, and trehalose production, adding to its antibacterial characteristics. This work illuminates the unique mechanism of action of C 12 -o-(BG-D)-10 and opens an avenue to design innovative antibacterial oligomers/polymers for future clinical applications.


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Dates et versions

hal-04560046 , version 1 (26-04-2024)



Maytham Hussein, Muhammad Bilal Hassan Mahboob, Jessica Tait, James Grace, Véronique Montembault, et al.. Providing insight into the mechanism of action of cationic lipidated oligomers using metabolomics. mSystems, 2024, ⟨10.1128/msystems.00093-24⟩. ⟨hal-04560046⟩
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