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Molecules found to counter antibiotic resistance

Genetic oddity exploited to restore drugs’ power against bacteria

By
2:20pm, March 9, 2016
MRSA

BUG OUT  Two types of lab-made molecules could force drug-resistant bacteria, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (scanning electron micrograph above), to become sensitive to antibiotics again.   

Even superbugs have their kryptonite.

Two types of lab-made molecules make drug-resistant bacteria susceptible to antibiotics again, researchers report March 9 in Science Translational Medicine. The discovery could provide new tools in the fight against microbes such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, which causes serious infections.

MRSA and related antibiotic-resistant bacteria can withstand a group of antibiotics called beta-lactams, which includes penicillin and methicillin. “There’s this notion in the pharmaceutical industry that all the low-lying fruits in terms of discovery of antibacterials have been identified,” says Shahriar Mobashery, a biochemist at the University of Notre Dame who was not involved with the study. “So any molecule that has the ability to resurrect beta-lactams, which are proven to be good

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