This site is intended for health professionals only
Monday 27 May 2019
Share |

Virus created to tackle superbugs

A virus is being used to target the DNA repair system of superbugs in order to leave them defenceless against antibiotics.

Scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in the US, created special "bacteriophages" to attack the bug's "Achilles heel".

A study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that when used alongside antibiotics, the virus destroys bacterial defences and prevents resistence from developing.

Lead researcher Dr Timothy Lu said: "There are a lot of targets to go after, but people haven't been able to find the drugs. It's much easier to modify phages than to invent a new drug."

In research with mice, those animals treated with both antibiotics and the engineered viruses had an 80% survival rate.

This compared with a 50% survival rate for mice treated with natural bacteriophages and antibiotics, and just 20% for those treated only with antibiotics.

Dr Lu said: "This work lays the groundwork for the development of a library of bacteriophages, each designed to attack different bacterial targets."

Experts believe that the research could be used to combat disease-causing bacteria in food processing plants, hospitals or other settings in which they may accumulate.

Copyright Press Association 2009

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Ads by Google

You are leaving www.nursinginpractice.com

You are currently leaving the Nursing in Practice site. Are you sure you want to proceed?

Close

Respect for nurses: Sign up to our e-petition TODAY

The Nursing in Practice Respect campaign is now live! Over the coming months, we're set to highlight the vital contribution and efforts of primary care and community care nurses throughout the UK.

As part of our campaign, Nursing in Practice is looking to call on parliament to set up a debate to celebrate the vital work that you do.


GET INVOLVED: SIGN OUR E-PETITION

Close

Calling all primary care nurses! 'Like' our Nursing in Practice Facebook page to enter our free draw to win a £25 M&S voucher




http://www.facebook.com/NursinginPracticeMagazine