Polyfluorinated salicylic acid analogs do not interfere with siderophore biosynthesis

Pooja V Hegde, Moyosore O Orimoloye, Sachin Sharma, Curtis A. Engelhart, Dirk Schnappinger, Courtney C. Aldrich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tuberculosis (TB), caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) is a leading cause of infectious disease mortality. The salicylic acid derived small molecule siderophores known as mycobactins are essential in vivo for iron acquisition of Mtb where iron is restricted in the host. Herein, we synthesize and explore the mechanism of action of polyfluorinated salicylic acid derivates, which were previously reported to possess potent antimycobacterial activity. We hypothesized fluorinated salicylic acid derivates may inhibit mycobactin biosynthesis through initial bioactivation and conversion to downstream metabolites that block late steps in assembly of the mycobactins. Enzymatic studies demonstrated that some of the fluorinated salicylic acid derivatives compounds were readily activated by the bifunctional adenylating enzyme MbtA, responsible for incorporation of salicylic acid into the mycobactin biosynthetic pathway; however, they did not inhibit mycobactin biosynthesis as confirmed by LS-MS/MS using an authentic synthetic mycobactin standard. Further mechanistic analysis of the most active derivative (Sal-4) using an MbtA-overexpressing Mtb strain as well as complementation studies with iron and salicylic acid revealed Sal-4 cannot be antagonized by overexpression of MbtA or through supplementation with iron or salicylic acid. Taken together, our results indicate the observed antimycobacterial activity of polyfluorinated salicylic acid derivative is independent of mycobactin biosynthesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102346
StatePublished - May 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier Ltd

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural


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