Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

PhD: Dr Darren Griffith - Combating Antibiotic Resistance with Novel Bismuth-Biomolecular Conjugates

During this project, candidates will develop bismuth conjugates, which possess (i) the antibacterial properties of bismuth and (ii) antimicrobial and targeting properties associated with specific biomolecules of interest and will overcome bacterial resistance.

Project title

Combating Antibiotic Resistance with Novel Bismuth-Biomolecular Conjugates.

Project description

The world is on the cusp of a 'post-antibiotic era' and there is a startling lack of new effective antimicrobials being developed and brought to market. There is therefore an urgent need to develop new classes of effective antibacterial agents.

Bismuth containing drugs have a rich history as antimicrobials and currently bismuth-containing quadruple therapies for H. pylori represent a successful strategy for overcoming multidrug bacterial resistance. Bismuth is considered relatively non-toxic to humans and has been clinically used for decades with no observation of H. pylori resistance.

There is strong evidence that bismuth interference with metal homeostasis and redox processes contribute to its antibacterial properties. There is therefore great potential to expand the application of bismuth beyond treating H. pylori and develop novel antibacterial agents that overcome multidrug Gram-positive and -negative bacterial antibiotic resistance.

This project will develop bismuth conjugates, which possess (i) the antibacterial properties of bismuth and (ii) antimicrobial and targeting properties associated with specific biomolecules of interest and will overcome bacterial resistance. The structure and speciation of these complexes will be fully characterised, their antibacterial activity against pathogenic resistant strains of E. coli and S. aureus determined and their mode of action investigated.

  • Research theme: Bioengineering
  • Keyword: Post-traumatic osteoarthritis,bone/cartilage crosstalk, early intervention therapeutics

Application process

Interested candidates please contact Dr Darren Griffith, Department Pharmaceutical and Medicinal Chemistry by email or phone +353 1 402 2246.

Mentors Dr Darren Griffith