) bacteria infect the stomach lining and can cause gastritis and ulcers. Treatment with broad-spectrum antibiotics can cure
infections. However, an estimated one billion people remain infected worldwide because of the cost of existing antibiotics and the emergence of antibiotic resistant strains of the bacteria, the researchers say.
The scientists knew from past research that blocking flavodoxin, a key protein that H. pylori
needs for survival, could be the key to developing narrow-spectrum antibiotics that specifically target H. pylori
. Sancho's team screened 10,000 chemicals for their ability to block flavodoxin and identified four that showed promise. They then showed that three of the four substances killed H. pylori
in cell cultures and did not have any apparent toxic effects in lab animals. "These new inhibitors constitute promising candidates to develop new specific antibiotics against H. pylori
," the study states.