Background: Infections caused by Mycobacterium and pathogenic fungi
have risen drastically over the past few decades. Moreover, with the increase in the
number of immunocompromised (burn, organ transplant, chemotherapy, HIV) patients,
these bacterial and fungal infections have led to alarming mortality rates. The
drugs currently in use have become relatively ineffective due to ever increasing phenomenon
of multidrug resistance. Furthermore, these drugs suffer with severe toxicity
effects and also lack cost effectiveness.
Objective: Under such compelling circumstances, it is pertinent to find novel and
safer drugs with improved properties. One strategy that could be adopted is to identify
natural bioactive compounds having antimicrobial potential with minimal side effects.
Alternatively, drugs synthesized with the help of combinatorial chemistry leading to enhanced antimicrobial
properties could be another strategy.
Result: This article summarizes at a common platform the current scenario of the available natural as
well as synthetic drugs targeting cell envelope that have patentable therapeutic interventions against
predominant human bacterial and fungal pathogens.