Why Antibiotics Are Ineffective Against Some Bacteria


Why antibiotics are ineffective against some bacteria. This issue has become a major concern for medical research communities around the world. A new research studies why the most potent drugs fail to fight against these “superbugs.”

Previous study on superbugs stated that antibiotics could become ineffective against such bacteria in near future, if they continue to protect themselves at such speed. For the reasons, a team of physicists from McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, set out a study to understand what makes these microorganisms resilient in the face of some of the drugs. This research, published in journal Nature Communications Biology, will help in upcoming treatments in fighting stubborn bacterial infections.

The physicists focused on polymyxin B which is an antibiotic used in the treatemtn of infections of the urinary tract, meninges, and bloodstream.

“We wanted to find out how this bacteria, specifically, was stopping this drug in this particular case, if we can understand that, we can design better antibiotics,” notes first author Adree Khondker.

The researchers explains that the bacterium “pulls in” the antibiotic. Here bacterium has a negative charge, while the drug has a positive charge. In this condition, the bacterial membrane prevents the antibiotic from reaching in the interior of bacterium. In the case of a drug-resistant bacterium, the condition becomes worsen.

“There has been a lot of speculation about this mechanism. But, for the first time, we can prove the membrane is more rigid, and the process is slowed,” explains Lead study author Prof. Maikel Rheinstädter.

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Amy Carpenter

About the Author: Amy Carpenter

Amy Carpenter is a reporter for Nuhey. She's worked and interned at Huffington Post and Vanity Fair. Amy is based in Arlington and covers issues affecting her city. In addition to her severe oyster addiction, she's a Netflix enthusiast, a red wine drinker, and a voracious reader.