Research Selected for Faculty of 1000

25 March 2010

Structure of the pSK41 actin-like ParM protein.
Structure of the pSK41 actin-like ParM protein.

Multidisciplinary research involving Dr. Anthony Brzoska, Professor Ron Skurray, Associate Professor Neville Firth and collaborators from Singapore, Japan and USA has been selected for Faculty of 1000. The research on an actin-like filament protein that contributes to the inheritance of resistance genes in the superbug "Golden Staph" is published in Journal of Biological Chemistry.

Antibiotic resistance genes in bacteria are often carried by DNA molecules called plasmids. The Staphylococcus aureus plasmid, pSK41, is the best characterised example of a family of medically important multiresistance plasmids, which can transmit copies of themselves, and the genes they carry, from resistant cells to sensitive ones, thereby making them multiply resistant. These plasmids carry partitioning genes that ensure that plasmid copies are segregated into both daughter cells during cell division, so that they are inherited efficiently. Unfortunately, bacteria can therefore gain resistance plasmids rapidly, but usually only lose them slowly, if at all.Ultimately, we would like to be able to reverse that situation. This research has revealed new details about how partitioning mechanisms work.

Faculty of 1000 Biology is an online research service that highlights and reviews the most interesting papers published in the biological sciences, based on the recommendations of a faculty of well over 2300 selected leading researchers, called Faculty Members.

The paper titled, Structure and filament dynamics of the pSK41 actin-like ParM protein: implications for plasmid DNA segregation, was evaluated by Faculty Member Edward Egelman from the University of Virginia School of Medicine.

Contact: Carla Avolio

Phone: 02 9351 4543

Email: 02590827564d1018361b24397401302e5d3c18195d105e60073c