Tag Archives: antibiotics

Searching for drugs in dirt, researchers call on citizen scientists

dirtonscale_thumb_2014 Soil microbes are believed to make a wealth of as-yet undiscovered molecules, including antibiotics. But getting at them isn’t easy. To make these potentially helpful bugs easier to find, researchers want to create maps, and they need help.
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Researchers find new path to antibiotics in dirt

The bacteria teeming in the earth’s soil produce some of the most powerful medicines we have. But only one percent of these potentially life-saving bugs has been studied because they are hard to grow in the lab. Now scientists at The Rockefeller University have taken the genetic material from a cup of dirt in Utah and derived a new family of antibiotics as strong as any used today. More »

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New antibiotic beats superbugs at their own game

The problem with antibiotics is that, eventually, bacteria outsmart them and become resistant. But Rockefeller University scientists have tested a new drug, called Ceftobiprole, that may be able to outwit them. More »

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Study of staph reveals how bacteria evolve resistance

By studying blood taken from a single patient over a period of months, Rockefeller University researchers have been able to trace how a common strain of bacteria adapted its genes to counteract the antibiotics used to try to kill it. More »

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Genetic ‘stress response’ may explain how bacteria resist drugs

Bacteria have a nasty habit of developing resistance to even our most powerful pharmaceuticals. But by tracking the staph infection of a single patient during a course of antibiotic treatment, Rockefeller University scientists have discovered new clues to how bacteria evolve resistance. More »

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Bacteria build walls to withstand antibiotics

Antibiotic resistant bacteria, which are proliferating in hospitals and causing major headaches for physicians, cheat death by finding ways to fortify their cell walls against the deadly drugs. Now, new research from the laboratory of Rockefeller’s Alexander Tomasz shows that one gene, called mecA, enables them to this. More »

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Viral locksmith is caught in the act

How does the molecular machine responsible for activating genes choose which gene to switch on, from among the 30,000 genes contained in each cell of the human body? In the August 4 issue of the EMBO Journal, researchers at Rockefeller University report that they are beginning to answer that question in bacteria, and the answers are not only surprising, but may also aid in the development of powerful new antibiotics. More »

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Superbug Update: Only a few families of Staphylococci cause most drug-resistant diseases in hospitals worldwide

The culprits behind antibiotic-resistant diseases now plaguing hospitals worldwide have been harboring a secret — one that Rockefeller scientists have recently exposed. It seems these infectious microbes termed Staphylococcus aureus are not independent criminals working alone. Rather, they are members of only a few massive “superbug” families, which have spread out and conquered the globe. More »

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Researchers Find Novel Way to Kill Streptococci Bacteria

Researchers at The Rockefeller University have discovered a powerful new way to destroy on contact the bacteria that cause strep throat, flesh-eating disease and a variety of other infections. The technique, which may not cause the bacteria to evolve resistant strains as antibiotics do, also could have applications for many other bacterial diseases. The findings are reported in the March 20 issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Early Edition Issue No. 12). More »

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Researchers Report Emergence of Antibiotic Resistance during Vancomycin Therapy

A team of researchers led by The Rockefeller University’s AlexanderTomasz, Ph.D., have described the case of a 79-year-old patientwhose death in a New York metropolitan area hospital last Marchwas associated with a bloodstream infection caused by a multidrug-resistantstrain of Staphylococcus aureus. The report, publishedin the Feb. 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine(NEJM), showed that the bacteria, which had decreased susceptibilityto vancomycin, could be treated effectively with a combinationof antibiotics. More »

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Structure of Enzyme Involved in Gentamicin Resistance Revealed for First Time

A team of scientists, led by researchers from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) at The Rockefeller University, has determined the three-dimensional structure of an enzyme responsible for resistance of certain bacteria to the antibiotic gentamicin. The structure, reported in the August 21 Cell, is the first for this family of antibiotics and presents a possible target for designing drugs to thwart resistance. More »

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Bacteria Steal Genes, Spread Antibiotic Resistance

A strain of the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae, resistant to the six most frequently used antibiotics and spread worldwide including U.S. day care centers and hospitals, appears to disguise itself from the immune system by changing its coat, report scientists from The Rockefeller University. More »

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