Researchers uncover the structure of anti-TB drug target, and identify a new weapon against the deadly disease

The fight against TB has taken several promising steps forward – scientists from Rutgers University have not only uncovered vital new information about how rifampicin, the frontline anti-TB drug, binds to its target, but have also discovered a completely new class of compounds that specifically kill TB bacteria. The paper was published in the journal … Read more

Not just a tasty snack – maple syrup can boost the power of antibiotics

Enjoy maple syrup with your pancakes? An ongoing study suggests that the popular kitchen companion contains extracts which could boost the power of antibiotics, significantly reducing the amount of drug needed to kill infectious bacteria. On the 2nd April, Dr. Nathalie Tufenkji presented the latest information on the study at the ‘253rd National Meeting & Exposition … Read more

A new test to rapidly and accurately diagnose TB infections

A research team has developed a new test which can quickly and accurately show whether someone is infected with TB and, for the first time, how serious the infection is. The team, composed of scientists from Arizona, Washington DC and Texas, developed the test, named the NanoDisc-MS, after a recent World Health Organisation (WHO) consensus … Read more

Invading microbes: Another threat for our vanishing coral reefs

New evidence suggests that coral reefs are facing another danger that puts their existence at risk – inland sources could be introducing invasive bacteria and fungi, disrupting these delicately maintained ecosystems. Using ‘Illumina-based next generation sequencing’, the research team were able to analyse the samples collected around the southeast coast of Florida, including inlet discharges, … Read more

Saving your eyesight: New research suggests chlorin e6 could protect against bacterial keratitis

A structure known as chlorin e6 (Ce6) could be used in photodynamic inactivation (PDI) therapy to protect patient’s eyes from the dangerous effects of Pseudomonas aeruginosa keratitis, new research has shown. The paper, which was published on 15th March 2017 in Nature Scientific Reports, showed that when the eyes of mice were infected with multi-drug … Read more

Pentamidine, wingman for the antibiotics: A new two-step approach to fight infections

A new dual therapy approach to fight multi-drug resistant gram-negative bacteria has been uncovered – and, interestingly, it involves an existing antifungal and antiprotozoal drug. Dr. Eric Brown, professor of biochemistry at McMaster University, and his team showed that pentamidine, a drug normally used to treat protozoan and fungal infections, is effective against drug-resistant gram-negative bacteria when … Read more

Nursing homes rarely use isolation precautions against multi-drug resistant infections, a recent study shows

Nursing homes may be infrequently applying isolation precautions to prevent the spread of infections caused by multi-drug resistant organisms (MDRO), a recent study suggests. The study, which was published on the 17th February 2017 in The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, was carried out at Columbia University School of Nursing in an attempt to … Read more

WHO produces a list of the 12 most dangerous bacteria

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has published a list of the 12 bacterial families against which new antibiotics are desperately needed. Unveiling the list on the 27th February 2017, WHO hopes that this list will spur the research and development of new antibiotics at a time when the drugs we’ve come to rely on to … Read more

New study gives vital information about a deadly emerging fungus

New work has shed light on the virulence factors of a dangerous, emerging fungi with multidrug resistance, and has also helped to identify a novel antifungal, SCY-078, which could potentially be used to save the lives of those infected by the organism. Candida auris was first reported in 2008 after being isolated from a patient … Read more

The Minicare HNL wins the Horizon Prize – a device which could help reduce the misuse of antibiotics

A handheld device, which can differentiate between bacterial and viral infections, and could help reduce the number of incorrectly prescribed antibiotics, has won the first ever European Union ‘Horizon Prize – Better Use of Antibiotics’ in Leuven, Belgium. The HNL test, developed by Royal Philips and Diagnostic Development, uses the Philips’ Minicare I-20 handheld diagnostic … Read more

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