An era without effective antimicrobial therapeutics is rapidly approaching.
Cases of extensively drug resistant pathogens emphasise the urgency for developing alternatives to those therapeutics that are currently available. Targeted therapeutics provide a means of improved drug efficacy and reducing host toxicity that may result from higher doses and non-specific binding.
The community of commensal microbes that live on and in humans, known as the microbiota, can be disrupted by the use of current antimicrobials through non-specific binding. Disruption of this community can then result in the development of infections by opportunistic pathogens.
Pathogens must colonise the host to cause an infection. One method of attachment to host cells is through carbohydrates. The focus of our efforts is to develop antimicrobial agents by deploying sugars that mimic these carbohydrate moieties, and couple to nanoparticles bearing a bacterial eradication agent.