Navigation Links
Novel approach strips staph of virulence

An international team of researchers supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has blocked staph infections in mice using a drug previously tested in clinical trials as a cholesterol-lowering agent. The novel approach, described in the February 14 online edition of Science, could offer a new direction for therapies against a bacterium thats becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics.

By following their scientific instinct about a basic biological process, the researchers made a surprising discovery with important clinical implications, said NIH Director Elias A. Zerhouni, M.D. Although the results are still very preliminary, they offer a promising new lead for developing drugs to treat a very timely and medically important health concern.

This work was supported by three NIH components: the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

A pigment similar to the one that gives carrots their color turns Staphylococcus aureus (staph) golden. In the bacterium, this pigment acts as an antioxidant to block the reactive oxygen molecules the immune system uses to kill bacteria.

Researchers had speculated that blocking pigment formation in staph could restore the immune systems ability to thwart infection. While perusing a magazine on microbial research, Eric Oldfield, Ph.D., of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign read how in 2005 University of California, San Diego researchers knocked out a gene in staphs pigment-making pathway to create colorlessand less pathogenicbacteria.

I looked at the metabolic pathway and noticed that it was similar to the one for the production of cholesterol in humans, said Oldfield, senior author of the Science paper, who had spent decades studying this pathway. With numerous cholesterol-lowering drugs already on the market and in development, he wondered if any could turn staph colorless and make them once again susceptible to the immune system.

Colleagues in Taiwan determined the structure of the enzyme that triggers the first critical step in staphs pigment formation and observed striking similarities to an enzyme involved in human cholesterol production. They also captured the structures of several cholesterol-lowering drugs bound to the bacterial enzyme.

Building on their 2005 research that sparked the current study, Victor Nizet, M.D., and George Liu, M.D., Ph.D., now at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, Calif., tested eight different drug compounds that act on the human cholesterol enzyme. Three blocked pigment production in laboratory tests. When the researchers treated mice infected with S. aureus with one of the compounds, the bacterial population was reduced by 98 percent.

Because the approach reduces the virulence of the bacteria by stopping pigment production, it may not cause selective pressures on the population, which can lead to antibiotic resistance. It also targets only S. aureus, possibly reducing side effects.

This is an entirely new approach that seems to work in animals, and now we need to take the next step to explore if it will work in humans, said Oldfield.


Contact: Emily Carlson
NIH/National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Related medicine news :

1. UCSD research team identifies novel anticancer drug from the sea
2. Novel compound may lessen heart attack damage
3. Novel molecules developed at UB can boost vaccine potency
4. Novel small molecule therapy shows benefit for anemic patients via hydration of red blood cells
5. Novel vaccine concept developed by scientists at the Wistar Institute
6. Tibotec Pharmaceuticals a Respectful Partner to HIV Community in Pricing of Novel New HIV NNRTI, INTELENCE
7. Millennium and Harvard Medical School Sign Cooperative Agreement for Research in Novel Field of Cancer Biology
8. Statement by AARP CEO Bill Novelli on President Bushs State of the Union
9. New method enables design, production of extremely novel drugs
10. Nerites Receives NIH Grant to Study Novel Treatment for Preventing Dangerous Bacterial Infections on Urinary Stents and Catheters
11. Speedy Procedures Demonstrate Excitement and Continued Interest in Novel Multi-Electrode Ablation System
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, can now turn to ... Dr. Russell Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. Dorsey brings specialization to ... fellowship in Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was under the direction of ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... California (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With ... fit their specific project," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. ... customizable and all within Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... Long Beach, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... from UCLA with Magna Cum Laude and his M.D from the David Geffen School ... San Diego and returned to Los Angeles to complete his fellowship in hematology/oncology at ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... On Friday, June 10, ... Bronze Wellness at Work award to iHire in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments in ... the 7th annual Maryland Workplace Health & Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott in ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... A recent article published June 14 on E Online details ... to state that individuals are now more comfortable seeking to undergo not only the ... and cheek reduction. The Los Angeles area medical group, Beverly Hills Physicians (BHP) notes ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, Inc ... company developing innovative inhaled drugs, announced today that it ... Russell Investments reconstituted its comprehensive set of U.S. ... "This is an important milestone for Pulmatrix," said ... increase shareholder awareness of our progress in developing drugs ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of ... report to their offering. ... kidney failure, it replaces the function of kidneys by removing ... thus the treatment helps to keep the patient body,s electrolytes ... Increasing number of ESRD patients & substantial healthcare expenditure ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- Roche (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY) announced that ... PCT (procalcitonin) assay as a dedicated testing solution for ... clearance, Roche is the first IVD company in the ... risk assessment and management. PCT is a ... in blood can aid clinicians in assessing the risk ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: