In a recent study published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, German scientists have named a type of bacteria after the beloved actor Keanu Reeves. This bacterium, known as Keanumycins, has the ability to fight against fungal diseases in plants and fungi that are pathogenic to humans.
Environmentally Friendly Alternative to Chemical Pesticides
According to Sebastian Götze, a researcher at the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology, "The lipopeptides kill so efficiently that we named them after Keanu Reeves because he, too, is extremely deadly in his roles." Keanumycins offer an environmentally friendly alternative to chemical pesticides and could also provide a solution in the fight against resistant fungi.
Götze explains, "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."
Potential Applications in Humans
Götze, who is also the first author of the study and a postdoc at Leibniz-HKI, states that the isolated substance was tested against various fungi that infect humans and was found to strongly inhibit the pathogenic fungus Candida albicans.
"In addition, we tested the isolated substance against various fungi that infect humans. We found that it strongly inhibits the pathogenic fungus Candida albicans, among others," says Götze. “These are also urgently needed, as there are very few drugs against fungal infections on the market”.
When news of the study made headlines again after one of Reeves' fans asked the actor for his thoughts on the matter, he jokingly replied, "Hi, thank you…they should’ve called it John Wick…but that’s pretty cool…and surreal for me." Through the Lionsgate account, Reeves wrote, "But thanks, scientist people!
Good luck, and thank you for helping us." Reeves will reprise his role as the legendary assassin John Wick in “John Wick: Chapter 4,” set to be released in theaters on May 27.