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Medicinal Chemistry News

New findings on UF marine compound shows versatility, from anti-tumor agent to bone regeneration

A promising medicinal compound discovered in a marine organism by University of Florida pharmacy researchers is showing its versatility against multiple diseases. Having already demonstrated its power as an anti-tumor agent, largazole, produced by a cyanobacterium inhabiting coral reefs, has shown a new potential benefit for treating serious fractures, osteoporosis and other bone diseases, according to a study reported this week in the journal ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters online.

Antibacterial agent could cause pregnancy problems

A chemical found in everything from antibacterial soaps and lotions to socks may disrupt an enzyme that plays an important role in pregnancy, University of Florida researchers say. Thought to be harmless, triclosan gives many soaps and lotions their antibacterial oomph and is found in hundreds of popular products.

Compound discovered in Florida Keys shows early promise as colon cancer treatment

A chemical compound made from a type of bacteria discovered in the Florida Keys by a University of Florida pharmacy researcher has shown effectiveness in fighting colon cancer in preclinical experiments. Writing online in the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, scientists say the compound — known as largazole because it was first found near Key Largo — inhibits human cancer cell growth in cultures and rodent models by attacking a class of enzymes involved in the packaging and structure of DNA. More study is needed, but scientists hope that the discovery will lead to new treatments for the roughly 50,000 people struck with colorectal cancer each year in the United States. Researchers are enthusiastic because in addition to having the marine bacteria as a natural source of the chemical, they have been able to synthetically produce the active chemical compound extracted from the bacteria.

UF marine researchers rush to collect samples as oil threat grows

In a race against time, University of Florida marine researchers are hurrying to collect underwater marine algae samples in the Florida Keys while an ever-growing Gulf oil spill steadily migrates toward Florida, already reaching the Emerald Coast in the Panhandle.

UF researchers discovery may help the human body self heal

Hendrik Luesch collaborating with researchers at Harvard and Scripps, published his findings. Researchers from the University of Florida have discovered a molecule that may help enhance our body’s natural antioxidant self-healing powers without the help of vitamins. This discovery could potentially help people stay healthy and disease free.  …