Novel peptide could lead to antibiotic for drug-resistant bacteria

Drug Target Review | November 22, 2019

An international team of researchers has discovered a novel peptide that attacks gram negative bacteria at a previously unknown site of action. Germs such as Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae have become resistant to the most – and in some cases all – currently available antibiotics. Their additional external membrane makes these difficult to attack as it protects the bacteria by preventing many substances from getting into the cell interior. Especially for the treatment of diseases caused by these so-called gram negative bacteria, there is a lack of new active substances. “Since the 1960s, scientists have not succeeded in developing a new class of antibiotics effective against gram negative bacteria, but this could now be possible with the help of this peptide,” said Professor Till Schäberle from the Institute of Insect Biotechnology at Justus Liebig University Giessen (JLU) and project leader at the DZIF, whose research group was involved in the discovery.

Spotlight

Since the moment we are born and hoisted into this world, we are under constant attack from pathogens. Disease-causing germs and microbes inhabit every imaginable nook and cranny of this planet. These invisible organisms have extreme survival instincts; you can find them thriving in the frigid polar ice caps as well as piping hot natural geysers. Pathogens have a tendency to invade healthy hosts, suck from nutrition from them, and proliferate. This is basically what an infection is. Contaminated food and water, polluted air, unhygienic living conditions – these are the havens for pathogens. Every waking second these dreadful organisms surround us. So how come you don’t catch a deadly bout of infection or disease every time you step out?

Spotlight

Since the moment we are born and hoisted into this world, we are under constant attack from pathogens. Disease-causing germs and microbes inhabit every imaginable nook and cranny of this planet. These invisible organisms have extreme survival instincts; you can find them thriving in the frigid polar ice caps as well as piping hot natural geysers. Pathogens have a tendency to invade healthy hosts, suck from nutrition from them, and proliferate. This is basically what an infection is. Contaminated food and water, polluted air, unhygienic living conditions – these are the havens for pathogens. Every waking second these dreadful organisms surround us. So how come you don’t catch a deadly bout of infection or disease every time you step out?

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