Informatic search strategies to discover analogues and variants of natural product archetypes

Chad W. Johnston, Alex D. Connaty, Michael A. Skinnider, Yong Li, Alyssa Grunwald, Morgan A. Wyatt, Russell G. Kerr, Nathan A. Magarvey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Natural products are a crucial source of antimicrobial agents, but reliance on low-resolution bioactivity-guided approaches has led to diminishing interest in discovery programmes. Here, we demonstrate that two in-house automated informatic platforms can be used to target classes of biologically active natural products, specifically, peptaibols. We demonstrate that mass spectrometry-based informatic approaches can be used to detect natural products with high sensitivity, identifying desired agents present in complex microbial extracts. Using our specialised software packages, we could elaborate specific branches of chemical space, uncovering new variants of trichopolyn and demonstrating a way forward in mining natural products as a valuable source of potential pharmaceutical agents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)293-298
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biotechnology


  • Informatic platforms
  • LC–MS/MS
  • Natural products
  • Nonribosomal peptides
  • Peptaibols


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