Fans are used to Keanu Reeves playing characters who kill their enemies.
So it’s no wonder that scientists in Germany have named a group of new antifungal compounds after him: keanumycins.
Scientists hope it can kill fungi known to threaten crops and treat fungal infections in humans.
“The lipopeptides kill so efficiently that we named them after Keanu Reeves because he, too, is extremely lethal in his role,” said Sebastian Götze, the lead author of the study into the killer. in a statement.
Although the study from the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology was published early last month, news of the discovery didn’t reach the star of “The Matrix” until last weekend during a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” session.
Reeves was grateful for the shoutout, but wished the scientists would name it after one of his deadly alter egos instead.
“Hi, thanks…they should have called it John Wick…but that’s pretty cool…and surreal to me,” Reeves wrote via the Lionsgate account in response to a user who shared the news, referring to his titular character in the popular action franchise. ‘But thank you, scientists! Good luck and thanks for your help.”
It’s rare to find such antifungal properties that actually work, Götze explains, in part because fungicides are so commonly used in agricultural products, allowing the fungus to build up resistance.
Fungal diseases lead to losses in numerous fruit and vegetable crops each year, especially strawberries and grapes, the institute said.
Another potential benefit of keanumycins is that they are environmentally friendly. Unlike chemical pesticides that are often used to kill crop-threatening fungi, Götze said the molecule is biodegradable and won’t last long in the soil.
Scientists also hope that the compounds could soon be developed into pharmaceutical drugs for human use.
“They are also urgently needed,” says Götze, “since there are very few drugs against fungal infections on the market.”
Reeves will reprise his role as the legendary assassin in “John Wick: Chapter 4,” which hits theaters May 27.
Although the demand for a fifth film is already high, Reeves said GamesRadar earlier this year that “we’ll have to wait and see how audiences react to” the fourth installment.
“Hope they like it,” he said.