Griswold Group: Biomolecular Antimicrobial Therapies
Several projects in the lab are focused on developing enzymes for use as antimicrobial agents in treating a variety of bacterial infections. Using directed evolution and other technologies, we are engineering therapeutic candidates to meet the following design specifications:
- biocidal activity towards drug resistant pathogens
- decreased immunogenicity in the context of the human immune system
- improved capacity to degrade bacterial biofilms
At the Thayer School of Engineering, we develop novel enzymes never before seen in nature, and we undertake detailed kinetic, biochemical and antimicrobial characterization to evaluate the proteins' therapeutic potential. Focusing on those enzymes exhibiting significant promise, we collaborate with researchers in the Lung Biology Center and the Cystic Fibrosis Research Development Program at Dartmouth Medical School to evaluate the candidates' functional properties in advanced in vitro models of bacterial infection. Enzymes with superior performance characteristics are tested for safety and therapeutic efficacy in conjunction with our collaborating clinical research group at the University of Vermont School of Medicine.