About Our Research
The Natural Products Chemistry Section carries out research in the areas of bioorganic chemistry, natural products discovery and structural biology with relevance to infectious diseases.
As a result of millions of years of evolutionary pressure to effect biology, natural products represent an ideal starting point for identifying new inhibitors of macromolecular receptors and biological processes. Ongoing projects, approaches, and interests in the lab include isolation and complete structure elucidation of natural products that kill drug resistant bacteria and block virus infection. To elucidate chemical and 3-dimensional structures of inhibitors we rely on multidimensional nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and high-resolution mass spectrometry (MS) techniques. NMR methods are especially powerful because they can be used to identify precise targets on proteins, or important structural features of inhibitors that account for activity. A variety of approaches are used to identify targets or determine mechanisms of action, including mutagenesis and genome sequencing, and cell based and functional assays.