Combining synthesis and biosynthesis to generate novel antibiotics
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This thesis focuses upon pacidamycin, a member of the uridyl peptide antibiotics, a family of antibiotics which exhibit an, as yet, clinically unexploited mode of action, against MraY. The Goss group has previously demonstrated the ease of accessing N and C-termini analogues of pacidamycin utilizing precursor directed biosynthesis. The central diamino acid is key to pacidamycin’s activity, yet little work has been carried out, to date, to investigate the SAR around this moiety. Particularly this thesis describes work toward generating pacidamycin analogues using the complementary tools of organic synthesis and biosynthesis. Chapter 1 introduces natural compounds and their importance in clinical use, provides a brief overview of the history of antibiotics and focuses on the urgent need for new antibiotics displaying new chemical architectures and possessing novel modes of action. This chapter also introduces uridyl peptide antibiotics and overviews the SAR studies around these unusual peptides, focusing on pacidamycin in particular. Diaminobutyric acid is central to these structures and a discussion of a selection of published methods to synthesis α, β-diaminobutyric acid (DABA) is also presented. Chapter 2 describes the synthesis of DABA and two analogues, in which the C-methyl moiety has been substituted by an ethyl or a cyclopropyl group. The mutasynthesis approach utilised in the attempt to generate novel pacidamycins and discussion around the results observes is also described. Chapter 3 demonstrates a three step one-pot reaction to access 1,3-disubstituted urea molecules. The chapter starts with a brief overview of previously established methods in the literature to access these useful molecules, and then moves towards a discussion about the reaction optimisation. The chapter also describes a family of analogues generated utilising this novel approach; and exploring the use of these analogues in the mutasynthesis of pacidamycin. In order to access the desired pacidamycin analogues with the modified diamino acid residue, it was determined that it is currently not possible to use a mutasynthesis approach, instead an approach of total synthesis needed to be employed. Chapter 4 describes this total synthesis. The C- terminal urea motif was generated using a novel 1-pot phosphine free route developed during this study. To access the central native (2S, 3S)- DABA, a variation of the route of Merino et al’s via Garner’s aldehyde was initially utilised. Subsequently, a shorter and more flexible approach from Soloshonok et al via a Ni (II) Schiff base complex of glycine was adopted. Unpublished results from the Goss group have shown that the 2’,3’dihydroxy uridine analogues in pacidamycin conferred broader spectra of activity. Work towards the synthesis of these analogues has been conducted. The order of assembly of the peptide and the nucleoside fragments was in alignment with Boojamra et al’s approach. If the de-protection chemistry had worked according to plan, this would have resulted with a synthesis that is at least 6 steps shorter and higher yielding then Boojamra’s. The introduction in this chapter reports the various methods previously reported in the literature for the total synthesis of pacidamycin. A discussion about the current progress in the total synthesis highlighting the difficulties faced is also shown. Chapter 5 demonstrates utilising semi-synthesis as a useful tool to generate novel pacidamycins by applying a Pictet-Spengler reaction on pacidamycin 4. This chapter starts with an overview of this phosphate mediated Pictet-Spengler reaction. In addition, a discussion about the large-scale fermentation of Streptomyces coeruleorubidus, the wild type producer of pacidamycin, and the generation of pacidamycin analogues utilising a semi-synthesis approach is also presented. Chapter 6 describes the future work following on from this study building upon each of the above chapters.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
Embargo Date: Print and electronic copy restricted until 8th July 2018, pending formal approval
Embargo Reason: Thesis restricted in accordance with University regulations
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