Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Breakthrough in superbug fight

My previous post was about breaking news dealing with MRSA. Here is an update to that story:

Experts from a university have developed a new way of fighting deadly hospital superbugs, it was revealed.

MRSA and similar infections that are resistant to antibiotics could be tackled following the breakthrough at Queen's University Belfast.

Special salts can be used to kill or prevent the growth of colonies of dangerous germs.

Martyn Earle, from Queen's, said: "Our goal is to design ionic liquids with the lowest possible toxicity to humans while wiping out colonies of bacteria that cause hospital-acquired infections."

There were 229 cases of MRSA in Northern Ireland in 2007, a slight reduction from the previous year. MRSA often strikes weak or elderly patients and can be a factor in their deaths. It can be passed between patients and visitors, and sufferers have to be isolated and special hygiene measures taken.

The development was carried out by eight researchers from the Queen's University Ionic Liquid Laboratories (Quill) centre.

Many types of bacteria, such as MRSA, exist in colonies that adhere to the surfaces of materials.

The colonies often form coatings, known as biofilms, that protect them from antiseptics, disinfectants, and antibiotics.

Assistant director at Quill Mr Earle added: "We have shown that, when pitted against the ionic liquids (salts) we developed and tested, biofilms offer little or no protection to MRSA, or to seven other infectious micro-organisms."

The Queen's work is being supported by an award from Invest NI.

Here is the link to the original story: MRSA

Someone posted a comment about the original story on MRSA. Here is what they wrote:

The Russians found a way to treat MRSA years ago.

Its just that the FDA that restricts there use in the US.


Bacteriophage's are used to treat many hard to treat bacterial infections in Russia and other countries.

Before penicillin they were commonly used in the US.


The comments were posted at this link: ATS

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> posted by Trevor Hammack @ 10:04 PM   0 comments links to this post


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