Dr Matthew Perugini
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
University of Melbourne
Research ActivitiesEnzymes of the Lysine Biosynthesis Pathway: The Perugini group is involved in a large program aimed at determining the structure, function, evolution and inhibition of bacterial enzyme antibiotic targets involved in lysine biosynthesis, namely dihydrodipicolinate synthase (DHDPS) and dihydrodipicolinate reductase (DHDPR). The group is particularly interested in using a structural-based approach to design small molecule and peptide inhibitors of DHDPS and DHDPR from several bacterial pathogens including Bacillus anthracis, Clostridium botulinum, Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Techniques/ExpertiseAnalytical ultracentrifugation, circular dichroism spectroscopy, differential scanning microcalorimetry, enzyme kinetics, fluorescence spectroscopy, HPLC, isothermal titration microcalorimetry, mass spectrometry, recombinant protein expression, standard molecular biology techniques, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (including 2D-DIGE), UV/Vis spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography.
CollaborationsDr Craig Hutton (School of Chemistry, Bio21 Institute, Uni. of Melb.)
Prof Juliet Gerrard (Uni. of Canterbury, NZ)
A/Prof Paul Gooley (Dept. of Biochem. & Mol. Biol., Bio21 Institute, Uni. of Melb.)
Prof Michael Parker (St Vincent’s Institute of Medical Research & Bio21 Institute, Uni. of Melb.)
Prof Roy Robins-Browne (Dept. of Micro & Immunol., Uni. of Melb.)
Prof Geoff Jameson (Massie University)
Disease ModelsIn collaboration with Prof Roy Robins-Browne, the research project focused on Streptococcus pneumoniae includes a pneumococcus rat model that is used to examine the in vivo effects of inhibitors developed against DHDPS and DHDPR enzymes.
Genetically Modified OrganismsDr Perugini's research program employs DHDPS and DHDPR gene knock-outs in bacterial strains, including Escherichia coli and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Other Lab MembersResearch Staff
Dr Con Dogovski (Post-doc)
Dr Renwick Dobson (CR Roper Fellow)
Jarrod Voss (Research Assistant)