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  1. Oliveira, Pedro H. (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT There is an urgent need for strategies to discover secondary drugs to prevent or disrupt antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which is causing >700,000 deaths annually. Here, we demonstrate that tetracycline-resistant (Tet R ) Escherichia coli undergoes global transcriptional and metabolic remodeling, including downregulation of tricarboxylic acid cycle and disruption of redox homeostasis, to support consumption of the proton motive force for tetracycline efflux. Using a pooled genome-wide library of single-gene deletion strains, at least 308 genes, including four transcriptional regulators identified by our network analysis, were confirmed as essential for restoring the fitness of Tet R E. coli during treatment with tetracycline. Targeted knockout of ArcA, identified by network analysis as a master regulator of this new compensatory physiological state, significantly compromised fitness of Tet R E. coli during tetracycline treatment. A drug, sertraline, which generated a similar metabolome profile as the arcA knockout strain, also resensitized Tet R E. coli to tetracycline. We discovered that the potentiating effect of sertraline was eliminated upon knocking out arcA , demonstrating that the mechanism of potential synergy was through action of sertraline on the tetracycline-induced ArcA network in the Tet R strain. Our findings demonstrate that therapies that target mechanistic drivers of compensatory physiological states could resensitize AMR pathogens to lost antibiotics. IMPORTANCE Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is projected to be the cause of >10 million deaths annually by 2050. While efforts to find new potent antibiotics are effective, they are expensive and outpaced by the rate at which new resistant strains emerge. There is desperate need for a rational approach to accelerate the discovery of drugs and drug combinations that effectively clear AMR pathogens and even prevent the emergence of new resistant strains. Using tetracycline-resistant (Tet R ) Escherichia coli , we demonstrate that gaining resistance is accompanied by loss of fitness, which is restored by compensatory physiological changes. We demonstrate that transcriptional regulators of the compensatory physiologic state are promising drug targets because their disruption increases the susceptibility of Tet R E. coli to tetracycline. Thus, we describe a generalizable systems biology approach to identify new vulnerabilities within AMR strains to rationally accelerate the discovery of therapeutics that extend the life span of existing antibiotics. 
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  2. Abstract The ability of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) to adopt heterogeneous physiological states underlies its success in evading the immune system and tolerating antibiotic killing. Drug tolerant phenotypes are a major reason why the tuberculosis (TB) mortality rate is so high, with over 1.8 million deaths annually. To develop new TB therapeutics that better treat the infection (faster and more completely), a systems-level approach is needed to reveal the complexity of network-based adaptations of Mtb. Here, we report a new predictive model called PRIME ( P henotype of R egulatory influences I ntegrated with M etabolism and E nvironment) to uncover environment-specific vulnerabilities within the regulatory and metabolic networks of Mtb. Through extensive performance evaluations using genome-wide fitness screens, we demonstrate that PRIME makes mechanistically accurate predictions of context-specific vulnerabilities within the integrated regulatory and metabolic networks of Mtb, accurately rank-ordering targets for potentiating treatment with frontline drugs. 
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