Much of the blame for this situation, explained Qijing Zhang of Iowa State University, can be placed on a mechanism in the bacteria called the efflux pump. It pushes out toxic substances from bacterial cells, but it also pushes out antibiotics. When the antibiotics are extruded by the pumps, pathogens such as Campylobacter are able to resist those antibiotics and survive in the animal hosts.
Zhang, a professor of veterinary microbiology and preventive medicine, is working on a project supported by the Food Safety Consortium aimed at stopping the efflux pumps’ effectiveness. Of the various efflux pumps in the bacteria, the one at the top of his list is labeled CmeABC.
“The first one we need to knock out or inhibit is CmeABC,” Zhang said. “That is the predominant one. If we can figure out some ways to block that pump and make it nonfunctional, basically Campylobacter will not be able to extrude antibiotics efficiently.”
Zhang’s research team has found two other efflux pumps – named Cjl375 and Cjl678 – that also enable Campylobacter to resist antibiotics. The pumps apparently work synergistically so that Campylobacter achieves a high level of resistance..
The strategy at this point is for the researchers to find an effective and stable inhibitor to block the pump’s effectiveness, which would make Campylobacter more susceptible to antibiotics and also prevent Campylobacter from colonizing in animals’ guts.
“So, one stone, two birds,” Zhang said.
The search for such inhibitors remains a challenge, and Zhang isn’t yet sure whether the inhibitors will turn out to be natural or synthetic products. The eventual goal is to develop a product for commercial use either at the farm or in the processing plant. Part of the complexity lies in the ability of efflux pumps to extrude multiple antibiotics at once.
“That means if we design inhibitors, then potentially we will be able to prevent the resistance to multiple antibiotics, not just to one antibiotic,” Zhang said.
The effort is a long-term project. Over the next couple of years, Zhang’s research team will seek to identify a potential chemical compound in a natural product that will show promise of inhibiting an efflux pump. Then it will be possible to predict how many years may be needed to commercialize it for practical use.Dave Edmark, Communications Director, 479-575-5647 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Dave Edmark | Newswise Science News
Six-legged livestock -- sustainable food production
11.05.2017 | Faculty of Science - University of Copenhagen
Elephant Herpes: Super-Shedders Endanger Young Animals
04.05.2017 | Universität Zürich
Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.
Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....
Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.
The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....
An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.
We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...
Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.
Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...
An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...
24.05.2017 | Event News
23.05.2017 | Event News
22.05.2017 | Event News
26.05.2017 | Life Sciences
26.05.2017 | Life Sciences
26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy