We report the discovery of antibacterial leads, keto- and diketo-acids, targeting two prenyl transferases: undecaprenyl diphosphate synthase (UPPS) and dehydrosqualene synthase (CrtM). The leads were suggested by the observation that keto- and diketo-acids bind to the active site Mg(2+)/Asp domain in HIV-1 integrase, and similar domains are present in prenyl transferases. We report the x-ray crystallographic structures of one diketo-acid and one keto-acid bound to CrtM, which supports the Mg(2+) binding hypothesis, together with the x-ray structure of one diketo-acid bound to UPPS. In all cases, the inhibitors bind to a farnesyl diphosphate substrate-binding site. Compound 45 had cell growth inhibition MIC(90) values of ~250-500 ng/mL against S. aureus, 500 ng/mL against Bacillus anthracis, 4 μg/mL against Listeria monocytogenes and Enterococcus faecium, and 1 μg/mL against Streptococcus pyogenes M1, but very little activity against E. coli (DH5α, K12) or human cell lines.