Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2017

Document Type


Type of Thesis

Departmental Honors


Molecular, Cellular, & Developmental Biology

First Advisor

Dr. Xiang Wang, Dept of Chemistry & Biochemistry

Second Advisor

Dr. Brian DeDecker, Dept of Molecular, Cellular, Developmental Biology

Third Advisor

Dr. Shelley Copley, Dept of Molecular, Cellular, Developmental Biology


Antibiotic resistance is a major threat to public health. Currently new multi-drug resistant bacterial strains are appearing faster than new antibiotics can enter the clinic. Resistance modifying agents can potentially potentiate whole families of antibiotics and are one way to combat antibiotic resistance. Previously, our lab synthesized a library of polycyclic indolines which were found to potentiate β-lactams in MRSA in vitro but were poor candidates for in vivo testing due to their physical properties. To improve their physical properties, we synthesized a small library of aza-tetracyclic indolines. The nitrogen was functionalized with various functional groups to determine which modifications are tolerated at that position. One methyl carbamate aza-tetracyclic indoline has improved physical properties compared to its lead compound, while still maintaining β-lactam potentiating activity in MRSA.