It is known that after an implant or surgery for prosthetics, the chances of infections through various bacteria rises. The fact that bacteria can target the area of the surgery and accumulate there to create their colony is a problem for many doctors and patients.
A group of University of Michigan researchers working with a group from The Scripps Research Institute have finally found an answer to this problem. The two teams have discovered a protein which can fight the bacteria and the antibiotic resistance.
As we know, the bacteria flowing through your body’s blood can easily collect on the newly added prosthetic or an implant. The bacteria gather together in the area and are protected by a layer of protective film. This protective film is called “Biofilm.” The biofilm is made out of a temporary structure of a protein called, “amyloid.” The bacteria itself create the protein amyloid.
The biofilm protects the bacteria from the effects of antibiotics that may be prescribed by the doctor thereby creating an antibiotic resistance. Earlier, it wasn’t clear as to how this problem should be tackled. But through research, it has been found that a substance called “transthyretin,” which is produced by humans, can fight this resistance. The researchers found that this substance/protein can efficiently suppress the creation of the biofilm and the production of amyloid altogether.
The research found that catheters played a massive role in the collection of bacteria. A catheter is an object that can be put inside a human. It was found that within a few days bacteria will start collecting around the catheters. This posed a huge problem in the medical field.
During the research, the team conducting the research treated bacterial infection in the urinary tract. The team handled a strain of E coli, which is a common bacteria found in humans. The amyloids in E coli are constituted of a substance called CsgA.
The researchers added purified transthyretin and CsgA. They found that once transthyretin was mixed, the CsgA could not produce amyloids, which meant that a biofilm could not be produced. So, if the biofilm was not working, it was obvious that the antibiotics could easily target the bacteria.
The research states that the bacteria can be easily targeted if a strain of bacteria is targeted rather than the entire group of the bacteria.
This research was conducted by Matthew Chapman, Neha Jain, and Joel Buxbaum. The team says that further research will be required in this field to for implementation of the results of this research. The research has proven that if the bacterial surfaces are somehow impregnated with protein, the host body will be able to get rid of the infections easily. Once the implementation of this is fixed, this research will help millions of people.