Untargeted metabolomics to ascertain antibiotic modes of action

Vincent, I. M., Ehmann, D. E., Mills, S. D., Perros, M. and Barrett, M. P. (2016) Untargeted metabolomics to ascertain antibiotic modes of action. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, 60(4), pp. 2281-2291. (doi: 10.1128/AAC.02109-15) (PMID:26833150) (PMCID:PMC4808186)

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Deciphering the mode of action (MOA) of new antibiotics discovered through phenotypic screening is of increasing importance. Metabolomics offers a potentially rapid and cost-effective means of identifying modes of action of drugs whose effects are mediated through changes in metabolism. Metabolomics techniques also collect data on off-target effects and drug modifications. Here, we present data from an untargeted liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry approach to identify the modes of action of eight compounds: 1-[3-fluoro-4-(5-methyl-2,4-dioxo-pyrimidin-1-yl)phenyl]-3-[2-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl]urea (AZ1), 2-(cyclobutylmethoxy)-5′-deoxyadenosine, triclosan, fosmidomycin, CHIR-090, carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP), 5-chloro-2-(methylsulfonyl)-N-(1,3-thiazol-2-yl)-4-pyrimidinecarboxamide (AZ7), and ceftazidime. Data analysts were blind to the compound identities but managed to identify the target as thymidylate kinase for AZ1, isoprenoid biosynthesis for fosmidomycin, acyl-transferase for CHIR-090, and DNA metabolism for 2-(cyclobutylmethoxy)-5′-deoxyadenosine. Changes to cell wall metabolites were seen in ceftazidime treatments, although other changes, presumably relating to off-target effects, dominated spectral outputs in the untargeted approach. Drugs which do not work through metabolic pathways, such as the proton carrier CCCP, have no discernible impact on the metabolome. The untargeted metabolomics approach also revealed modifications to two compounds, namely, fosmidomycin and AZ7. An untreated control was also analyzed, and changes to the metabolome were seen over 4 h, highlighting the necessity for careful controls in these types of studies. Metabolomics is a useful tool in the analysis of drug modes of action and can complement other technologies already in use.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Perros, Professor Manos and Barrett, Professor Michael
Authors: Vincent, I. M., Ehmann, D. E., Mills, S. D., Perros, M., and Barrett, M. P.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Infection & Immunity
Journal Name:Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
Publisher:American Society for Microbiology
ISSN (Online):1098-6596
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 Vincent et al.
First Published:First published in Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 60(4):2281-2291
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
371799The Wellcome Centre for Molecular Parasitology ( Core Support )Andrew WatersWellcome Trust (WELLCOME)104111/Z/14/ZIII - PARASITOLOGY
623593Institutional Strategic Support Fund (ISSF)Anna DominiczakWellcome Trust (WELLCOME)105614/Z/14/ZRI CARDIOVASCULAR & MEDICAL SCIENCES