Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Potential treatment for deadly E. coli disease: Australian researchers produce 'designer' probiotic

Date:
June 7, 2011
Source:
University of Adelaide
Summary:
A potential life-saving treatment for severe E. coli food poisoning outbreaks -- developed more than a decade ago -- hasn't gone forward into clinical trials because of lack of commercial interest, Australian researchers say. They have produced a "designer" probiotic bacterium which binds and neutralises the toxin produced by E. coli, which causes life-threatening attack on the kidneys and blood vessels.

The probiotic bacterium (blue) with E. coli Shiga toxin (red) bound all over its surface.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Adelaide

A potential life-saving treatment for severe E. coli food poisoning outbreaks -- developed more than a decade ago -- hasn't gone forward into clinical trials because of lack of commercial interest, Australian researchers say.

University of Adelaide researchers produced a "designer" probiotic bacterium which binds and neutralises the toxin produced by E. coli, which causes life-threatening attack on the kidneys and blood vessels.

The team of scientists -- Dr Adrienne Paton, Associate Professor Renato Morona and Professor James Paton -- showed that mice infected with a highly virulent strain of E. coli were completely protected by the probiotic bacterium.

The research was published in the journal Nature Medicine in 2000 and generated ongoing interest from the scientific and medical community -- but the commercial sector hasn't taken up its development for progress into clinical trials in humans.

"Severe E. coli food poisoning outbreaks such as that currently occurring in Europe are becoming increasingly common," said Professor Paton, Director, Research Centre for Infectious Diseases at the University of Adelaide.

"They have the potential to cause widespread disease and many patients develop life-threatening complications including kidney failure.

"The probiotic bacterium could be produced cheaply on a large scale. However, in spite of on-going attention from the scientific and medical community, there has been a lack of interest from the commercial sector in taking this product forward into clinical trials.

"If this had been done, and the probiotic had been proven to be safe and efficacious in humans, it could have been deployed during the current European outbreak. This would undoubtedly have saved lives, as well as millions of dollars in current and future health care costs."

The researchers engineered a harmless bacterium to mimic binding receptors for the potentially fatal Shiga toxin on its surface.

Professor Paton said after diagnosis of E. coli infection there was a window of opportunity for therapeutic intervention before kidneys started to fail. Antibiotics are not used because they can increase the amount of toxin released in the gut.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Adelaide. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Adrienne W. Paton, Renato Morona, James C. Paton. A new biological agent for treatment of Shiga toxigenic Escherichia coli infections and dysentery in humans. Nature Medicine, 2000; 6: 265-270 DOI: 10.1038/73111

Cite This Page:

University of Adelaide. "Potential treatment for deadly E. coli disease: Australian researchers produce 'designer' probiotic." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110607094524.htm>.
University of Adelaide. (2011, June 7). Potential treatment for deadly E. coli disease: Australian researchers produce 'designer' probiotic. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110607094524.htm
University of Adelaide. "Potential treatment for deadly E. coli disease: Australian researchers produce 'designer' probiotic." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110607094524.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The Wawona Packing Company has issued a voluntary recall on the stone fruit it distributes due to a possible Listeria outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die

Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die

AP (July 22, 2014) An 80-year-old agave plant, which is blooming for the first and only time at a University of Michigan conservatory, will die when it's done (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The 83 new genetic markers could open dozens of new avenues for schizophrenia treatment research. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Head Concerned About a Post-Antibiotic Era

CDC Head Concerned About a Post-Antibiotic Era

AP (July 22, 2014) Sounding alarms about the growing threat of antibiotic resistance, CDC Director Tom Frieden warned Tuesday if the global community does not confront the problem soon, the world will be living in a devastating post-antibiotic era. (July 22) Video provided by AP
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