Research of Natural Substances: Structure and Function

Research of Natural Substances: Structure and Function

Mgr. Gabriela Balíková-Novotná, Ph.D. — Project head

The Institute of Microbiology of the Czech Academy of Sciences

About us


Bioactive compounds from bacteria, fungi and invertebrates

The structure and function of biotechnologically relevant enzymes

Antibiotic mode of action and mechanisms of resistance

Characterization of bacterial human and envirnonmental communities



Determination of the structure and mechanism of action of natural biologically active compounds, understanding of their role in the environment as well as their interactions with target molecules

Characterization of the biosynthetic, biotransformational and biodegradational potential of bacteria, fungi and invertebrates, including the properties and structure of their enzymes

Study of the metabolic activity of microbial producers of natural substances in the environment using metagenomics, metatranscriptomics and metaproteomics.



Gabriela Balíková Novotná

The problem of antibiotic resistance in gram-positive cocci is addressed using a complex approach. The function of resistance proteins and mechanisms of resistance development is studied in pathogens and antibiotic producers. The knowledge is then used for the development of drugs to overcome the existing resistance mechanisms and/or to be active against biofilms. The activity of new drugs, the mode of their action and possibility of antibiotic resistance development is assessed. Biosynthetic pathways of antibiotic production are also investigated and participating enzymes are characterized in terms of their function and structure.

Rubén López Mondéjar

The composition and ecology of communities of natural compound-producing microorganisms in the environment are studied with the use of metagenomics metatranscriptomics and metaproteomics. Functional screening and characterization leads to the recovery of microbial strains with biotechnological potential, their characterization using genome sequencing and proteomics and the exploration of the regulation of the production of natural, biologically-active compounds, proteins and genes. Novel free-living bacteria and fungi as well as those living in symbiotic relationships with other organisms (plants, insects, mammals) are targeted.



Testing the clinical potential of new antibacterial compounds. Exchange of research fellowships is welcome. Student positions at all levels are advertised. Cooperation with end-users of the biotechnologically-relevant environmental strains of microorganisms, their enzymes and genes.




Kamenik Z, Kadlcik S, Radojevic B, Jiraskova P, Kuzma M, Gazak R, Najmanova L, Kopecky J, Janata J. Deacetylation of mycothiol-derived 'waste product' triggers the last biosynthetic steps of lincosamide antibiotics. Chem Sci. 2016 Jan 1;7(1):430-435. doi: 10.1039/c5sc03327f.


Lenart J, Vimberg V, Vesela L, Janata J, Balikova Novotna G. Detailed mutational analysis of Vga(A) interdomain linker: implication for antibiotic resistance specificity and mechanism. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2015 Feb;59(2):1360-4.

Eva Stodůlková, Ivana Císařová, Miroslav Kolařík, Milada Chudíčková, Petr Novák, Petr Man, Marek Kuzma, Barbora Pavlů, Jan Černý and Miroslav Flieger 2015 Biologically Active Metabolites Produced by the Basidiomycete Quambalaria cyanescens - PloS ONE 10: e0118913


Baldrian P, López-Mondéjar R. Microbial genomics, transcriptomics and proteomics: new discoveries in decomposition research using complementary methods. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2014 Feb;98(4):1531-7.