Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Mechanisms of antibiotic action

Antibiotics target structures and pathways that are unique and important to bacteria such as cell wall synthesis, cytoplasmic membrane synthesis, protein synthesis, nucleic acid (DNA or RNA) synthesis and intermediary metabolism (McCallum, 2010).
A-Inhibition of cell wall synthesis:
Bacterial cell wall function and structure:
A cell wall maintains cellular integrity by countering the effects of osmosis when the cell is in a hypotonic solution. If the wall is disrupted, it no longer prevents the cell from bursting as water moves into the cell by osmosis (Dmitriev et al., 2005).
The major structural component of a bacterial cell wall is its peptidoglycan layer. Peptidoglycan is a huge macromolecule composed of polysaccharide chains of alternating N-acetylglucosamine (NAG) and N-acetylmuramic acid (NAM) molecules that are cross linked by short peptide chains extending between NAM subunits. To enlarge or divide, a cell must synthesize more peptidoglycan by adding new NAG and NAM subunits to existing NAG-NAM chains, and the new NAM subunits must then be bonded to neighboring NAM subunits (Meroueh et al., 2006).
You need to read more
Manual of Antibiotics: Method of Actions, Mechanisms of Resistance and Relations to Health Care associated Infections

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