Research in the Dick Lab

The lab’s focus is on the discovery of new preclinical development compounds against TB and Non-Tuberculous Mycobacterial (NTM) lung disease, including Mycobacterium abscessus and Mycobacterium avium. We apply a ‘compound first strategy’, i.e. we start with new chemical entities showing whole cell activity. This is followed by target deconvolution and hit-to-lead chemistry to deliver target-lead couples. In addition to de novo drug discovery, we carry our repositioning projects. Overall, we are prioritizing broad spectrum anti-mycobacterials active against both NTM and TB. NTM lung disease is depicted in Fig. 1. Fig. 2 shows a flow chart guiding compound progression.

Dick Research Figure 1 Illustration
Figure 1 Lung disease caused by Mycobacterium abscessus. Smooth and rough colonies of the opportunistic pathogen are shown at the bottom.
Dick Research Figure 2 Illustration
Figure 2 Flow chart for guiding the discovery of new NTM antibiotics. The flow chart for the discovery of new drugs active against Mycobacterium tuberculosis is similar. Wu et al. (2018) Drug Discovery Today, doi: 10.1016/j.drudis.2018.04.001.F

Recent publications

Dartois V, Dick T. Therapeutic developments for tuberculosis and nontuberculous mycobacterial disease. Nat Rev Drug Discov. 2024, in press

Aragaw WW, Negatu DA, Bungard CJ, Dartois VA, Marrouni AE, Nickbarg EB, Olsen DB, Warrass R, Dick T. Pharmacological validation of dihydrofolate reductase as a drug target in Mycobacterium abscessus. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2024, PMID: 38018963

Negatu DA, Shin SJ, Kim SY, Jhun BW, Dartois V, Dick T. Oral β-lactam pairs for the treatment of Mycobacterium avium complex pulmonary disease. J Infect Dis. 2023, PMID: 38150401

Xie M, Ganapathy US, Lan T, Osiecki P, Sarathy JP, Dartois V, Aldrich CC, Dick T. ADP-ribosylation-resistant rifabutin analogs show improved bactericidal activity against drug-tolerant M. abscessus in caseum surrogate. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2023, PMID: 37493373

Sarathy JP, Aldrich CC, Go ML, Dick T. PROTAC antibiotics: the time is now. Expert Opin Drug Discov. 2023, PMID: 37027333

Ganapathy US, Lan T, Dartois V, Aldrich CC, Dick T. Blocking ADP-ribosylation expands the anti-mycobacterial spectrum of rifamycins. Microbiol Spectr. 2023, PMID: 37681986

Contact the Lab


Mailing Address:
Center for Discovery and Innovation
111 Ideation Way
Nutley, NJ 07110

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