News & Events

Kerry McPhail, Ph.D.


Date - October 6, 2017
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm


Associate Professor of Medicinal Chemistry
Pharmaceutical Sciences
Oregon State University

Talk Title: “Genomics-assisted microbial natural products discovery”


The dominant role of “privileged” natural product (NP) structures in modern medicine is well established,
especially for microbial NPs in the treatment of infectious diseases and cancers. The discovery of extensive
NP biosynthetic potential in sequenced microbial genomes, has prompted efforts to target biosynthetic
genes for NPs that may be in short supply for absolute structure elucidation and biological investigations, or
that represent new chemical entities not detected in field-collected samples or expressed in laboratory
culture. We have taken advantage of collaborations in metagenomics to facilitate investigations of new
macrocyclic marine natural products from tunicate/microbial symbiont consortia. We have also embarked on
a collaboration with evolutionary biologists to investigate the evolutionary patterns and processes of NP
diversification in ecologically diverse hypocrealean fungi of the genus Tolypocladium. It is anticipated that
linking genomics, transcriptomics and “secondary metabolomics” will facilitate rapid de-replication of known
NPs and targeting of putative new biologically active NPs produced in workable quantities.

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