Non-iron hemin analogs as potent antibacterial agents

Wednesday, February 14, 2024


Multidrug-resistant bacteria pose a major challenge to healthcare. Antibiotic tolerance and resistance strains develop due to prolonged and repeated exposure to stress. Small colony variants (SCVs), a highly tolerant sub-population, are precursors for development of resistant strains. Development of strategies to tackle tolerant mechanisms is vital to thwart increase in resistant strains. This talk will focus on utilization of photoactive non-iron hemin analogs (Al-, Ga-PpIX) as photosensitizers for antimicrobial photodynamic inactivation (aPDI). Non-iron hemin analogs serve a dual purpose as fluorescent dyes and aid in elucidation of their uptake by bacterial species. Efficacy of these compounds were evaluated against methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and small colony variants (SCVs). We have found that Al- and Ga-PpIX are potent antimicrobial agents with a 3-log reduction at nanomolar concentration against S. aureus.

Speaker Details

Badhu Sivasubramaniam

Purdue University

Badhu Sivasubramaniam is a Ph.D. candidate in Dr. Alex Wei’s group in the Dept. of Chemistry. Originally from Tamilnadu, India, she completed her undergraduate studies in India and started her Ph.D. at Purdue University in 2018. Her research focus in the Wei group is on the intersection of chemistry and biology, where she has been exploring porphyrin molecules for their antimicrobial properties and utilizing them to study uptake mechanisms. Apart from her research, she is a trainee of the Purdue Drug Discovery NIH T-32 Training Program. She also interned at Sartorius where she developed analytical methods for the purification and characterization of extracellular vesicles.