Mechanism of Action and Use of Radiomimetic Compounds – Part 2

Radiomimetic Substances of Bacterial Origin

doi: 10.32567/hm.2023.2.3


Radiomimetic compounds, similarly to ionising radiation can directly or indirectly cause DNA damage. Two major groups of these compounds, alkylating agents and antimetabolites, have already been discussed in the first part of this article. The topic of this article is an overview of radiomimetic substances of biological origin; they are grouped and discussed upon their chemical structure. Some bacteria, belonging to the class of Actinobacteria can produce compounds with radiomimetic property as part of their defence mechanisms, such as bleomycins, enediynes, streptonigrins, etc. Radiomimetic compounds of bacterial origin can be divided into three main groups: radiomimetic glycopeptides, enediynes and quinone antibiotics. Each of them induces double-strand DNA breaks. Some of them work through their reactive radicals and the molecules are also transformed when they break DNA. Others, such as bleomycin and similar glycopeptides, have an enzyme-like catalytic effect as the molecule regenerates itself after interacting with DNA thus the same molecule can create new DNA breaks again. The damage caused by radiation and by bleomycin is very similar: double DNA strand breaks occur in close proximity to each other, below the lethal dose of the cell, so as the cell does not die, the DNA repair process is activated, which can lead to the formation of dicentric chromosomes and other detectable DNA alterations. This review briefly summarises the mechanism of action of bacterial radiomimetic compounds and their benefit.


radiomimetic bleomycin enediyne dicentric chromosome alkylating agents

Hogyan kell idézni

Deli, G. (2023). Mechanism of Action and Use of Radiomimetic Compounds – Part 2: Radiomimetic Substances of Bacterial Origin. Hadmérnök, 18(2), 57–72.


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