Wilfred van der Donk
Board Member: 2017 - Present
Multi-drug resistant bacterial strains have appeared in recent years, with several strains posing the threat of becoming immune against all commercially available antibiotics. During a time of threat of spread of infectious disease due to these drug-resistant strains, Dr. van der Donk’s research program focuses on the discovery and design of new antibiotics and natural products. They are particularly interested in the mode of action and mechanism of biosynthesis of two classes of antibiotics that have been underexplored but have great potential for human therapeutic use, lantibiotics and phosphonate antibiotics. His research team uses microbiological and genomic tools to determine these products’ mode of action, chemical biology techniques to study their biosynthesis, and synthetic chemistry to improve their activities and therapeutic properties.