Current Trends in the Identification and Development of Antimicrobial Agents

Anti Bacterial Drugs: A Bright Past but a Challenging Future

Author(s): Nitin Pal Kalia, Manoj Kumar, Souhaila Al Khodor and Sandeep Sharma *

Pp: 105-124 (20)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815080056123020007

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


The discovery of penicillin opened the avenues for antibacterial drug discovery to address the global problem of deadly infectious diseases. However, despite the availability of potent antibiotics and effective vaccines, bacterial infections are still the major contributors to morbidity and mortality worldwide. The use of antibiotics is a two-edged sword; on the one hand, antibiotics have helped us combat deadly bacterial infections. On the other hand, overuse of antibiotics has led bacterial pathogens to develop drug resistance. The components of the bacterial cell-like cell wall, cell membrane, protein synthesis, and nucleic acid synthesis were targeted to develop effective drugs. Using these selective microbial targets, multiple potent antibiotic classes were developed in the last century, but emerging bacterial resistance and a decline in the number of new antibiotic approvals in recent years are pushing us back to the pre-antibiotic era. An increase in multidrug-resistant strains and the ineffectiveness of current drugs pose a challenge for researchers to develop new antibiotics with a novel mechanism to treat drug resistance. In the current chapter, we focus on the antibacterial drug used for the treatment of important human pathogens.

Keywords: Antibiotics, Anti-bacterial, Drug resistance, Drug discovery, Human pathogens.

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