Health Care

Novel platform finds a new antibiotic class in soil

Novel platform finds a new antibiotic class in soil

As researchers around the world scramble to cultivate new molecules that can destroy disease-causing microorganisms, scientists from The Rockefeller University in NY have reported the discovery of a new class of antibiotics called malacidins, which are produced by microorganisms that live in soil and dirt.

Concerns have repeatedly been raised that medicine will be taken back to the "dark ages" if antibiotics are rendered ineffective in the coming years.

"Big pharma are looking for blockbuster drugs they can recoup their money on, quickly".

Ajay Gupta declared a fugitive from justice
Another is newly elected ANC secretary general Ace Magashule, who also drove the Vrede initiative as Free State premier. The Head of the Department of Agriculture in the Free State, Peter Thabethe, is allegedly also among the suspects.

The problem, though, is that only about 1% of bacterial species in soil can be cultured in labs, for a variety of reasons.

Brady says there are at least 10,000 bacteria under each footprint of soil, a lot of them still unidentified.

"We're missing most of the molecules that would have come from that extraordinarily productive platform", said Brady, a chemist and associate professor at Rockefeller University. So instead, they used high-speed computer processing to "screen" the soil samples for the distinctive chemical hallmark of calcium dependence. This then triggers bacterial cell destruction, killing the target bacterium. "We put it into a bug we can grow, and we look to see whether those genes can confer the production of new molecules". Even after 20 days of continued contact with malacidin - more than enough time for most bacteria to find a way to thwart an antibiotic's effects - samples of MRSA bacteria showed no signs of evolving resistance to the newly discovered agent. Daptomycin is the most well-known of these drugs.

Apple HomePod Leaves Its Mark - On Furniture
Another post on Pocket-Lint said the mark appeared after just 20 minutes of the HomePod sitting on a oak kitchen countertop. At the time of writing the firm is not issuing a recall, nor it offering customers refunds or compensation for damage.

Brady and his colleagues were interested in calcium-dependent antibiotics because they appear to switch on in the presence of calcium and off without it. By narrowing their search for the DNA signature of calcium dependence, they were able to find a needle in a haystack - and find a promising compound. When they found what they were after, they cloned the genes, rearranged them and implanted them in a host organism, using fermentation to expand the sample. They used PCR primers that latch onto a common biosynthetic gene to identify variants of this gene within soils.

The team of researchers noted that this antibiotic broke down the cell walls of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in the skin infections caused by MRSA in the rodents. 'This might be a way of reducing resistance'.

Dr Alderwick, who is director of the Birmingham Drug Discovery Facility as well as a lecturer at Birmingham University, said work by university teams, like the Rockefeller group and his own team, will play a larger role in future antibiotic discovery because pharmaceutical companies have struggled to make money in this area.

Winter Olympics: Shirtless Tongan Flag Bearer Goes Viral (Again)
And if you were wondering: Yes, Tonga is an island in the Pacific. "My goal was to qualify and to see if I could actually get through and I did".