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Catching BAM in the act: a strategy for novel antibiotics?

Project Description

Gram negative bacteria are important pathogens to both humans and livestock responsible for life-threatening opportunistic systemic hospital infections, respiratory and urinary tract infections and gastric ulcers. As antibiotic resistance is emerging in the bacteria responsible for these conditions there is an urgent need to develop novel antibacterials on suitable targets. The beta-barrel associated machinery (BAM) complex of Gram negative bacteria which inserts outer membrane proteins in to this membrane is a promising novel target as it is vital for cell survival. In contrast to the wealth of structural and functional knowledge for BAM, its mechanism of action is still poorly understood, hindering rational drug design campaigns.
The aim of this project is to investigate BAM mechanism by using protein engineering methods (whose effects are will be validated using an in vivo survival assay) to test the different models proposed for BAM function. These insights will be used to trap a protein substrate with the ultimate aim of visualizing this complex using appropriate biophysical and structural methods.

Funding Notes

White Rose BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnership in Mechanistic Biology
4 year fully-funded programme of integrated research and skills training, starting Oct 2020:
• Research Council Stipend
• UK/EU Tuition Fees
• Conference and research funding

At least a 2:1 honours degree or equivalent. We welcome students with backgrounds in biological, chemical or physical sciences, or mathematical backgrounds with an interest in biological questions.

EU candidates require 3 years of UK residency to receive full studentship

Not all projects will be funded; the DTP will appoint a limited number of candidates via a competitive process.

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How good is research at University of Leeds in Biological Sciences?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 60.90

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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