Andrew Truman, Marcio Dias (John Innes Centre)
Glycopeptide antibiotics are natural products made by actinomycete bacteria. This image shows the structure of an enzyme engineered by researchers from the John Innes Centre on the Norwich Research Park and the University of Cambridge to produce the novel glycopeptides needed to combat glycopeptide-resistant bacteria. The enzyme is co-crystalised with one substrate shown in cyan (in a deep binding pocket) and another substrate (yellow) is modelled to the surface. The reds and blues on the surface of the structure reflect the charge of the enzyme at those positions (red reflects negative charge and blue reflects positive charge). An enzyme structure that includes its substrates enables researchers to understand in detail how the enzyme works.