University of Massachusetts Medical School Faculty Publications


Rethinking the composition of a rational antibiotic arsenal for the 21st century

UMMS Affiliation

UMass Center for Clinical and Translational Science

Publication Date


Document Type



Animals; Anti-Bacterial Agents; Bacterial Infections; Bacteriocins; Bacteriophages; Colicins; Drug Resistance, Bacterial; Drug Therapy, Combination; Humans; Imidazoles; Niacin; Urinary Tract Infections


Bacterial Infections and Mycoses | Biochemistry | Medical Microbiology | Medical Molecular Biology | Molecular Biology


The importance of the human microbiome in health may be the single most valuable development in our conception of the microbial world since Pasteur's germ theory of the 1860s. Its implications for our understanding of health and pathogenesis are profound. Coupled with the revolution in diagnostics that we are now witnessing - a revolution that changes medicine from a science of symptoms to a science of causes - we cannot continue to develop antibiotics as we have for the past 80 years. Instead, we need to usher in a new conception of the role of antibiotics in treatment: away from single molecules that target broad phylogenetic spectra and towards targeted molecules that cripple the pathogen while leaving the rest of the microbiome largely intact.


UMCCTS funding

DOI of Published Version



Future Med Chem. 2013 Jul;5(11):1231-42. doi: 10.4155/fmc.13.79. Link to article on publisher's site

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Future medicinal chemistry

PubMed ID