Aminoglycosides are powerful antibiotics, but the emergence of resistant bacterial strains has prompted the search for analogues with better pharmacological profiles. The synthesis of 2-deoxystreptamine (2-DOS) dimers linked by polyamines and analogues based on furylcarbopeptoid skeletons is described. Potent and selective ligands for bacterial 16S rRNA were identified using microarray techniques by determining the affinity of these derivatives toward bacterial and human ribosomal RNAs.