Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Anthrax Research Might Provide More Time For Treatment

Date:
July 31, 2003
Source:
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Summary:
Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., have been awarded new federal grant money to develop experimental compounds that may someday extend the period during which a person exposed to anthrax can be treated successfully.

TROY, N.Y. – Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., have been awarded new federal grant money to develop experimental compounds that may someday extend the period during which a person exposed to anthrax can be treated successfully. Ravi Kane, assistant professor of chemical and biological engineering at Rensselaer has been awarded a grant of $500,000 from the National Institutes of Health's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) to develop inhibitors of the anthrax toxin. The inhibitors will be tested in collaboration with Dr. Jeremy Mogridge at the University of Toronto.

The potentially deadly disease anthrax is caused by a toxin secreted by the spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis. Antibiotics can kill the bacteria and, started early enough, offer successful treatment in many cases. Standard antibiotic treatment has no effect on the amount of toxin that builds up in the blood over time, however, making speedy treatment crucial.

Standing in the Way of Infection

"An effective anthrax inhibitor would be able to prevent the toxin from binding to receptors on the human cell, thereby hindering the toxin from doing any damage," Kane said. Unlike antibiotics, which can kill the bacteria but do not affect the toxin, an inhibitor also would be able to reduce levels of toxin that have been released into the body. Once levels of toxin have been lowered, standard antibiotic treatment also would be administered to kill all remaining bacteria. "Combined with standard antibiotic treatment, a toxin inhibitor would enable the successful treatment of anthrax at later stages of the disease and allow many more lives to be saved," Kane said.

New Option for Prevention

Heightened awareness of the ability to deliver anthrax spores through the air, combined with the high mortality rate of the inhaled form of the disease, has led to the use of the spores as a biological weapon. An anthrax vaccine currently is available, but large-scale use is not practical, says Kane. "An anthrax inhibitor also might be able to function as a preventive agent," says Kane, "and could be used as an alternative to passive immunotherapy." The inhibitor agent could be more affordable and shelf-stable, making such a treatment suitable for stockpiling.

Kane's anthrax inhibitor research is part of Rensselaer's overall effort to advance biotechnology discoveries for the benefit of public health, the environment, homeland security, bioterrorism, and for positive economic development locally and globally.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. "Anthrax Research Might Provide More Time For Treatment." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 July 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030730075847.htm>.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. (2003, July 31). Anthrax Research Might Provide More Time For Treatment. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030730075847.htm
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. "Anthrax Research Might Provide More Time For Treatment." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030730075847.htm (accessed April 19, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

AP (Apr. 18, 2014) Dairy farmers and ethnic groups in Vermont are both benefiting from a unique collaborative effort that's feeding a growing need for fresh and affordable goat meat. (April 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) Andy Dixon showed the Daily Mail a screenshot of what he believes to be the mythical beast swimming just below the lake's surface. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
First Ever 'Female Penis' Discovered In Animal Kingdom

First Ever 'Female Penis' Discovered In Animal Kingdom

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) Not only are these newly discovered bugs' sex organs reversed, but they also mate for up to 70 hours. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins