In the July 15 issue of The Journal of Clinical Investigation, Ambrose Cheung and colleagues at Dartmouth School of Medicine in New Hampshire, USA, report that salicylic acid (SAL), the major metabolite of aspirin, downregulates two Staphylococcus aureus genes key to this organisms pathogenesis.
Over 100 years have passed since S. aureus was first described as the organism responsible for causing sepsis and abscesses. Today it remains a leading cause of serious infections such as endocarditis, pneumonia, and septicemia and requires intensive antibiotic therapy, which is often unsuccessful due to the rise of antibiotic resistant strains.
Aspirin has previously been shown to reduce the virulence of S. aureus in models of endocarditis. In an earlier study, this same group found that while administration of aspirin or its metabolite, SAL, was capable of reducing the ability of S. aureus to attach to host cells, the effect was significantly enhanced following SAL administration.
Brooke Grindlinger | EurekAlert!
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