Bacterium that infects people with cystic fibrosis, may help in fighting against other antibiotic-resistant microbes, discover scientists.
Realizing the need for new antibiotics to combat the emergence of multidrug-resistant bacteria such as the MRSA superbug, researchers from Cardiff and Warwick Universities conducted the study.
They found that antibiotics from Burkholderia, a group of bacteria, which cause severe lung infections in people with the genetic disorder cystic fibrosis are effective against MRSA and even other cystic fibrosis infecting bacteria.
Over two years of research revealed that around one quarter of Burkholderia bacteria have very strong antibiotic activity on multidrug-resistant pathogens such as MRSA.
In fact, one particular strain Burkholderia ambifaria was found to produce two very potent antibiotics active on resistant bacteria, in particular Acinetobacter baumanii.
"The combination of enzymes used by Burkholderia to make the enacyloxins is very unusual. Our insights into this process should allow us to use cutting edge synthetic biology techniques to produce novel enacyloxin analogues with improved pharmaceutical properties," said Prof. Gregory Challis from the University of Warwick.
The study has been published in the journal Chemistry and Biology.