Humans, and the microbes that live inside us, could be the source of the next generation of antibiotics.
German researchers just discovered an antibiotic produced by bacteria that inhabit our noses. This new antibiotic can kill MRSA, the poster child for drug resistance and the culprit behind the most pernicious hospital-acquired staph infections.
“Our study can help to understand what we can do to eradicate these pathogens from the microbiota of healthy people,” said Andreas Peschel, lead author of the study, published Wednesday in Nature.
Here’s how it works: Think of our bodies as garden beds, with bacteria as the plants. We used to think that all bacteria were weeds, invading and making us sick. To get rid of bacteria, we just hacked everything down.
“We’ve taken basically a ‘clear cutting’ approach to treating disease — just whack ‘em all and hope that something good happens,” said Michael Gilmore, a professor of microbiology at Harvard Medical School who reviewed the study and is an expert in antibiotic resistance and drug discovery.
Click here to read the full article by Anna Vlasits, STAT News.