An international research team led by the Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and IBM Research developed a synthetic molecule that can kill five deadly types of multidrug-resistant bacteria with limited, if any, side effects. Their new material could be developed into an antimicrobial drug to treat patients with antibioticresistant infections.
This finding was reported in the scientific journal Nature Communications.
Superbugs that are resistant to antibiotics are a serious health threat. According to the UK Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, superbugs kill around 700,000 people worldwide each year. By 2050, 10 million people could die each year if existing antibiotics continue to lose their effectiveness.
“There is an urgent global need for new antimicrobials that are effective against superbugs. The situation has become more acute because bacteria are starting to develop resistance to the last-line antibiotics, which are given only to patients infected with bacteria resistant to available antibiotics,” said Professor Jackie Y. Ying, Executive Director of IBN.
The research community is trying to develop alternatives to antibiotics using synthetic polymers. However, the antimicrobial polymers developed so far are either too toxic for clinical use, not biodegradable or can only target one type of bacteria.
To address this problem, Dr Yi Yan Yang from IBN brought together a multidisciplinary research team from the US, China and Singapore to develop a new class of antimicrobial polymers called guanidinium-functionalized polycarbonates with a unique killing mechanism that can target a broad range of multidrug-resistant bacteria. It is biodegradable and non-toxic to human cells.
The polymer kills bacteria in the following way. First, the polymer binds specifically to the bacterial cell. Then, the polymer is transported across the bacterial cell membrane into the cytoplasm, where it causes precipitation of the cell contents (proteins and genes), resulting in cell death.
The team tested the polymers on mice infected with five hard-to-treat multidrug-resistant bacteria: Acinetobacter baumannii, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, methicillinresistant Staphylococcus aureu and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. These superbugs are commonly acquired by patients in the hospitals and can cause systemic infections that lead to septic shock and multiple organ failure. The results showed that the bacteria were effectively removed from the mice and no toxicity was observed.
The researchers then further tested the effectiveness of the polymers on mice with two types of systemic infections caused by superbugs: peritonitis (an infection of the stomach’s inner lining) and lung infections from Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The polymers eliminated the bacterial infections in both groups of mice with negligible toxicity.
Dr Yi Yan Yang, Group Leader at IBN said, “We have demonstrated the first example of a biodegradable synthetic macromolecule with broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity in mice, unique killing mechanism and no toxicity. Once the polymer finishes its job of killing the bacteria, it will be naturally degraded after three days and will not remain in the body. This antimicrobial agent shows great promise for the treatment and prevention of multidrug-resistant systemic infections.”
“This study illustrates the potential for this new research field we denote as ‘macromolecular therapeutics’ to create entirely new classes of treatments for multiple diseases,” said Dr James Hedrick, Distinguished Research Staff Member, IBM Research – Almaden, San Jose, California. “In 2016, we demonstrated the efficacy of synthetic polymers to combat deadly viral diseases. The current research for treating bacterial infections rounds out our ability to someday treat a spectrum of infectious diseases with a single, new type of mechanism without the onset of resistance.”
To determine whether the bacteria will develop any resistance to the polymer, the team collaborated with Dr Paola Florez de Sessions at A*STAR’s Genome Institute of Singapore and the Cell Engineering group of Dr Simone Bianco at IBM Research – Almaden to perform genomic analysis. They found that the bacteria did not show any resistance development even after multiple treatments with the polymer.
The Latest on: Antimicrobial drug
[google_news title=”” keyword=”Antimicrobial drug” num_posts=”10″ blurb_length=”0″ show_thumb=”left”]
via Google News
The Latest on: Antimicrobial drug
- Antimicrobial resistance: Challenges in preventing hospital infectionson November 27, 2023 at 10:57 pm
The high HAI has also resulted in spread of drug-resistant infections within hospital premises and outside communities. “Vigilance and appropriate treatments are essential, considering risk factors ...
- Machine learning unlocks secrets of antimicrobial resistance, identifying over 900 key geneson November 27, 2023 at 7:18 pm
Researchers employed advanced techniques like gene annotation, pangenomics, and machine learning to identify over 900 genes responsible for antimicrobial resistance in 12 bacterial species, ...
- CSIR collaborates with RSC to tackle threat of antimicrobial resistanceon November 27, 2023 at 2:43 pm
The inputs from the meeting will be incorporated into a White Paper on tackling AMR in India, commissioned by the Managing Director of RSC-India, Ajit Sharma, who opined that a healthcare crisis of ...
- Antibiotic resistance is a threat to humanity, yet we have no idea exactly how big the problem is in Australiaon November 27, 2023 at 10:00 am
Antimicrobial resistance is corroding one of the core pillars of modern pharmaceuticals, and it is rampant. Yet we do not know how many AMR incidents are occurring across Australia, nor how many ...
- Antibiotic slashes risk of drug-resistant TB in kids, major SA study findson November 27, 2023 at 9:54 am
Tuberculosis preventive therapy has been transformed in recent years, with treatment duration having been cut from six or more months to just three or even one. Progress in developing new treatments ...
- Antibiotic resistance can be preventedon November 27, 2023 at 4:03 am
Of particular concern was the report of the high prevalence of multi-drug resistant bacteria such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and extended-spectrum beta-lactamase ...
- Canadian Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance System (CARSS)on November 24, 2023 at 3:56 pm
The rate of HA MRSA BSI remained stable. While overall resistance remained stable in tuberculosis (TB), PHAC was notified of a case of extensively drug-resistant (XDR) TB in 2021. Indicators of ...
- Investment in novel therapies key to tackle antimicrobial resistance: Reporton November 24, 2023 at 7:15 am
However, developing a novel antimicrobial is a risky prospect with limited financial incentives. Consequently, drug developers are often deterred from investing in the development of these therapies,” ...
- Antibiotic Drugs Market on Track to Reach US$ 64.9 Billion by 2033, Driven by 3.7% CAGR | Future Market Insights Inc.on November 16, 2023 at 4:30 am
An Increase in Surgical Site Infection and CAUTI are Expected to Propel the Antibiotic Drugs Market Growth. Leading Key players include in Pfizer, Sanofi SA, AbbVie Inc. (Allergan plc), Teva ...
- U.S. FDA approves CorMedix's antimicrobial drugon November 15, 2023 at 7:11 am
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday approved CorMedix's antimicrobial drug that aims to reduce catheter-related bloodstream infections (CRBSIs) in patients with kidney disease, ...
via Bing News