New cellular technique could stop MRSA before it starts

Share this article:

It might be possible to stop super bugs like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) before they become harmful, new research shows.

Current theory holds that staph infections are caused when a large number of bacteria signal each other to begin emitting toxins, according to researchers with the Jeff Brinker research group. The process, however, actually begins in a single cell, the Brinker group found. One cell releases a certain peptide that switches bacteria from harmless to virulent. By introducing a simple protein—called a lipoprotein—researchers were able to bind that peptide to the cell, stopping the bacteria from becoming harmful.

This new approach could make it easier to treat drug-resistant staph infections before they become life-threatening, researchers say. Also, by treating the infection without antibiotics, good bacteria that live in the stomach and intestines would not be affected. A description of the Brinker group's experiment appears in a recent edition of the journal Nature Chemical Biology.


Share this article:

More in News

'Minor' issues at the nursing home can cause disastrous care transitions, expert warns

'Minor' issues at the nursing home can cause ...

What may appear to be minor administrative problems in a nursing home - a fax machine locked away at night or no one designated to copy paperwork - can cause ...

Long-term care facilities approach 80% worker flu vaccination rate after handing power ...

Fourteen long-term care facilities in Pennsylvania dramatically increased their staff flu vaccination rate by having a regional pharmacy take over the process, according to a report issued Thursday by the Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research (AHQR).

RACs were 'most improved' healthcare auditors for getting back money in 2013, ...

Medicare Recovery Audit Contractors dramatically stepped up their overpayment recoveries last year, returning nearly $487 million more to the government than they did in 2012, according to a new report from a federal watchdog agency.