Researchers have discovered keanumycins, named after a Hollywood star, which help crops and human bodies to serve as antimicrobial agents in the body. They are handy in fighting against fungi which cause diseases in several organisms. The nomenclature was part of a new study that was published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.
A science website named IFLScience stated that fungal infections are a growing cause of concern for humans and crops, as they are also a major source of crop losses.
“We have a crisis in anti-infectives. Many human-pathogenic fungi are now resistant to antimycotics partly because they are used in large quantities in agricultural fields,” said Dr. Sebastian Götze, the first author of the research.
The study states that keanumycin molecules suppress the growth of harmful fungi in the human body. The study also stated that the molecules can be an “environmentally friendly alternative” to the chemical-heavy options.
As far as plants are concerned the keanumycins work against pests on plants, such as Botrytis cinerea. This pest causes rot in crops, causing harvest losses.
“Many human-pathogenic fungi are now resistant to antimycotics (antifungal) – partly because they are used in large quantities in agricultural fields…Theoretically, the Keanumycin-containing supernatant from Pseudomonas cultures could be used directly for plants,” continued Dr. Götze.
Why is it named after Keanu Reeves?
According to a report by the Independent, the name is inspired by Reeves’ character in his best-known John Wick series.
“The molecules kill so efficiently that we named them after Keanu Reeves because he, too, is extremely lethal in his roles,” stated the Independent.