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New technology shows promise against resistant staph infections
Date:4/30/2009

oven difficult. "The problem is that nitric oxide is very short-lived and, until now, methods to deliver it to targeted tissues in the proper dosages have proven elusive," says Dr. Joel Friedman.

The Friedmans solved the problem of controlled and sustained NO delivery by developing a method of generating NO from sodium nitrite within a novel nanoparticle formulation. The nanoparticles are stable when dry and resemble a fine white powder when present in large amounts.

"As the particles take on water, they loosen up and the nitric oxide slowly trickles out, releasing specific amounts of the gas which is exactly what happens in your body," says Dr. Friedman.

The present study involved collaboration between the Friedman laboratory and Dr. Nosanchuk's laboratory. Mice whose skin was infected with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, were treated topically with NO-containing nanoparticles or with nanoparticles devoid of NO. A third group received no treatment at all.

The NO-containing nanoparticles proved highly effective. After seven days, infected wounds in the group treated with the NO-containing nanoparticles were significantly improved and smaller than lesions in the two other groups. In addition, bacterial counts were significantly lower in the NO-treated group compared with the other groups, and the NO-treated group showed evidence of accelerated wound healing both visually and microscopically.

After further refining their nanoparticles, the Einstein team plans to test them in clinical trials against MRSA and other infections. Dr. Friedman is confident that the therapy will be safe for human use. "To date there have been no indication of toxicity in any of the numerous animal studies," he says.

In another potential use, Einstein scientists at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association earlier this week reported that nanoparticles carrying either NO or the drug tadalafil (Ciali
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Contact: Deirdre Branley
sciencenews@aecom.yu.edu
718-430-2923
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

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