Antimicrobial Compositions for Treating Clostridium Infections

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William Self, Ph.D.
Managed By
Brion Berman
Assistant Director 407.882.0342
Patent Protection
US Patent 10,314,813

New methods using puupehenone compounds may kill or prevent Clostridium difficile infections.

A UCF researcher has developed new methods for using puupehenone compounds to possibly treat illnesses caused by Clostridium bacterial strains, such as C. difficile. Puupehenone is a marine natural product excreted by some species of sponges and coral as a defense mechanism. The UCF invention may also be effective against antibiotic-resistant strains of Clostridium.

Already resistant to multiple kinds of antibiotics, C. difficile kills 30,000-40,000 people a year in the United States. The pathogen inflames the colon, causing life-threatening diarrhea. Infections typically occur after antibiotic use and affect mostly elderly patients, those at long-term care facilities and hospitals, and people with weakened immune systems.

Technical Details

The invention focuses on puupehenone’s antimicrobial properties and methods for using concentrations of puupehenone-based compounds to kill, reduce or inhibit the cell growth of Clostridium bacterial strains, such as C. difficile, C. perfingens, C. tetani and C. botulinum. It includes methods for administering a therapeutically effective amount of a puupehenone compound (or a derivative) to those with a Clostridium infection or who are at risk of developing a Clostridium infection.

Partnering Opportunity

The research team is looking for partners to further develop the technology for commercialization.

Stage of Development



  • Can be used to develop novel drugs to treat or prevent one or more symptoms of C. difficile infections and other Clostridium infections
  • May alleviate the problem of drug resistance


Drugs for treating the vegetative as well as the spore form of any Clostridium infection.