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The Vanderbilt Center for Antibiotic Discovery (VCAD) is a trans-institutional multidisciplinary research initiative confronting the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance among bacterial pathogens.  Bacterial infections remain the leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide despite the tremendous success of antibiotics in treating these diseases. The rapid increase in antimicrobial resistance among bacterial pathogens is a major impediment to our ability to eliminate this primary cause of human suffering. 

To meet this challenge, the VCAD is identifying fundamental bacterial processes that can be targeted for the discovery of new classes of antibiotics. VCAD members, all actively engaged in the process of antibiotic discovery, combine the resources of Vanderbilt University, the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, and University of Rochester Medical Center. This unique partnership provides us with the infrastructure required to discover new molecules with exciting antimicrobial activities, optimize these molecules through iterative rounds of medicinal chemistry, advance lead compounds through a full range of in vitro and in vivo drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics studies, and finally select optimized candidate antimicrobials for efficacy determinations. 

These efforts leverage the considerable experience in drug discovery provided by the Vanderbilt Institute of Chemical Biology (VICB) and are guided by a highly experienced and accomplished Scientific Advisory Board with considerable expertise in pharmaceutical development. Vanderbilt’s position as the coordinating center for the national network of Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) places us in an excellent position to propel our discoveries into clinical practice with the goal of reducing the tremendous toll that infectious diseases take on global public health.      


Principal Investigator

Eric P. Skaar, Ph.D.
Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
1161 21st Avenue South, A-5102A MCN
Nashville, TN  37232-2363
615-343-0002 tel
615-343-7392 fax