Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Promising discovery in fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria

Date:
May 22, 2014
Source:
University of British Columbia
Summary:
A small molecule that prevents bacteria from forming into biofilms, a frequent cause of infections, has been discovered by researchers. The anti-biofilm peptide works on a range of bacteria including many that cannot be treated by antibiotics. "Currently there is a severe problem with antibiotic-resistant organisms," says the lead author of the study. "Our entire arsenal of antibiotics is gradually losing effectiveness."

UBC’s Bob Hancock and his team of researchers have discovered a peptide that could help destroy biofilms, which are responsible for two-thirds of human infections.
Credit: Martin Dee

Researchers at the University of British Columbia have identified a small molecule that prevents bacteria from forming into biofilms, a frequent cause of infections. The anti-biofilm peptide works on a range of bacteria including many that cannot be treated by antibiotics.

"Currently there is a severe problem with antibiotic-resistant organisms," says Bob Hancock, a professor in UBC's Dept. of Microbiology and Immunology and lead author of the study published today in PLOS Pathogens. "Our entire arsenal of antibiotics is gradually losing effectiveness."

Many bacteria that grow on skin, lung, heart and other human tissue surfaces form biofilms, highly structured communities of bacteria that are responsible for two-thirds of all human infections. There are currently no approved treatments for biofilm infections and bacteria in biofilms are considerably more resistant to standard antibiotics.

Hancock and his colleagues found that the peptide known as 1018 -- consisting of just 12 amino acids, the building blocks of protein -- destroyed biofilms and prevented them from forming.

Bacteria are generally separated into two classes, Gram-positives and Gram-negatives, and the differences in their cell wall structures make them susceptible to different antibiotics. 1018 worked on both classes of bacteria as well as several major antibiotic-resistant pathogens, including Pseudomonas aeruginosa, E. coli and MRSA.

"Antibiotics are the most successful medicine on the planet. The lack of effective antibiotics would lead to profound difficulties with major surgeries, some chemotherapy treatments, transplants, and even minor injuries," says Hancock. "Our strategy represents a significant advance in the search for new agents that specifically target bacterial biofilms."


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Cιsar de la Fuente-Nϊρez, Fany Reffuveille, Evan F. Haney, Suzana K. Straus, Robert E. W. Hancock. Broad-Spectrum Anti-biofilm Peptide That Targets a Cellular Stress Response. PLoS Pathogens, 2014; 10 (5): e1004152 DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1004152

Cite This Page:

University of British Columbia. "Promising discovery in fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140522175719.htm>.
University of British Columbia. (2014, May 22). Promising discovery in fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140522175719.htm
University of British Columbia. "Promising discovery in fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140522175719.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) — West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) — Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Newsy (July 28, 2014) — The asteroid that killed the dinosaurs struck at the worst time for them. A new study says that if it hit earlier or later, they might've survived. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

AP (July 27, 2014) — A live-streaming webcam catches loggerhead sea turtle hatchlings emerging from a nest in the Florida Keys. (July 27) 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