Novel Antibiotic Molecule Shows Promise Against Drug-resistant Bacteria

Novel Antibiotic Molecule Shows Promise Against Drug-resistant Bacteria

by Dr. Trupti Shirole on Aug 20 2022 4:42 PM
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  • Antibiotic resistance is a growing threat to mankind.
  • Scientists have now developed a new antibiotic that can kill several important ‘superbugs’.
  • This molecule causes the least amount of harm to the body’s beneficial bacteria.
A newly developed antibiotic can penetrate the cell walls of both, gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, and kill infection-causing superbugs. Antibiotics are rapidly losing their effectiveness against bacteria, putting us on the verge of a health threat. However, this new antibiotic has shown promise against several important ‘superbugs’ while doing the least amount of harm to the body’s beneficial bacteria.
A classic example of evolution is bacteria. Only the most resilient survive when exposed to antibiotics, which means that ultimately the whole population develops drug resistance. Gram-negative bacteria pose a particular threat because they protect themselves with strong cell walls and molecular pumps that reject the medication.

New antibiotic therapy development has slowed down. A once-minor disease becomes fatal and threatens to reappear time and again because we are quickly running out of effective antibiotics.

The new study’s researchers have created a unique antibiotic candidate that combats this issue. Scientists began with an existing antibiotic that works well against gram-positive bacteria. They made structural modifications to make it more effective against gram-negative bacteria.

Fabimycin, the study candidate, was effective against 54 different strains of bacteria, including E. coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Acinetobacter baumannii, in over 200 clinically isolated colonies of resistant bacteria. In studies on mice, it was shown that Fabimycin might treat drug-resistant pneumonia or urinary tract infections while bringing bacteria levels even lower than they were before the infection.

In addition, Fabimycin was relatively selective in the bacteria it attacked, leaving certain innocuous bacteria unharmed. That’s an improvement over many antibiotics now in use, which indiscriminately kills numerous helpful microorganisms and leads to a variety of negative side effects.

Further research may lead to the ultimate addition of Fabimycin or comparable compounds to our arsenal against superbugs, particularly those illnesses that are difficult to cure.

The study has been published in the ACS Central Science journal.