A team of scientists from the Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology (BIST), together with researchers from other Spanish institutions, have used modified bacteria to fight microbes, that form biofilms impenetrable to antibiotics on the implant surface. The study researchers indicate that it is the first genome-reduced bacterium capable of fighting bacterial infections resulting from medical intervention. Medicine can also become a treatment for various diseases. This type of advancement can be, as can be expected, of enormous importance for the development of medicines.
Promising results in all experiments
One of the most common types of biofilm-forming bacteria is Staph. The infections caused by this bacteria are not treatable with ordinary antibiotics., which requires surgical removal of infected medical implants.
Alternative treatments with antibodies or enzymes that could be used in these cases are highly toxic to healthy tissues, and cause unwanted side effects.
The scientists, propose using enzymes to deliver microorganisms directly to biofilms, that is, modified bacteria that can produce these enzymes on their own. The authors believe that this method can become a safe and inexpensive way to treat infections that result from medical intervention.
According to them, bacteria are the ideal carrier for this type of delivery, since they have small genomes that can be modified by simple genetic manipulations, without representing a danger to the health of the organism.
Large-scale production with all standards
The technology they have used is based on synthetic biology and the use of living biotherapeutic media.. Special attention was paid to all safety and efficacy standards for their use, particularly in the lungs, since respiratory diseases are one of the team’s priority objectives, said María Lluch-Senar, from the Center for Genomic Regulation (CRG) of Barcelona, responsible for the study.
Researchers they plan to continue conducting clinical trials and move to large-scale production of the first living medicine.
The research professor at the Catalan Institute for Research and Advanced Studies (ICREA) Luis Serrano, indicates that bacteria are ideal vehicles for living medicine, as they can “load” any therapeutic element to treat the source of a disease and, once they arrive at their destination, they offer a continuous and localized production of the therapeutic molecule.
Bacteria created they can be modified with different payloads to direct them to the treatment of different types of diseases.
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