Mycobacterium abscessus and β-lactams: Emerging insights and potential opportunities

Elizabeth Story-Roller, Emily C. Maggioncalda, Keira Cohen, Gyanu Lamichhane

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


β-lactams, the most widely used class of antibiotics, are well-tolerated, and their molecular mechanisms of action against many bacteria are well-documented. Mycobacterium abscessus (Mab) is a highly drug-resistant rapidly-growing nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM). Only in recent years have we started to gain insight into the unique relationship between β-lactams and their targets in Mab. In this mini-review, we summarize recent findings that have begun to unravel the molecular basis for overall efficacy of β-lactams against Mab and discuss emerging evidence that indicates that we have yet to harness the full potential of this antibiotic class to treat Mab infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2273
JournalFrontiers in Microbiology
Issue numberSEP
StatePublished - Sep 25 2018


  • LD-transpeptidase
  • Mycobacterium abscessus
  • Peptidoglycan
  • β-lactamase inhibitor
  • β-lactams

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)

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