'Tolerant' bacteria drive resistance to antibiotics

February 09, 2017

Disease-causing bacteria that become resistant most quickly to the antibiotic ampicillin do so by acquiring mutations that allow them to tolerate the antibiotic first, a new study reveals. Antibiotic resistance is a major threat to human health, and gaining insights into how bacteria develop resistance is critical for finding solutions to combat the problem. Bacteria survive antibiotic exposure either because they can become inactive when exposed to antibiotics (tolerance) or because they acquire active mechanisms to counter the antibiotic (resistance). Here, Irit Levin Reisman et al. analyzed batches of Escherichia coli strains intermittently exposed to the antibiotic ampicillin. They found that resistance emerged more quickly in strains that had already developed tolerance mutations. Using their experimental data, they calculated the probability that a resistance mutation will occur if tolerant mutations are already in place. Their analysis reveals that without tolerance, the resistance mutations would most often be lost during antibiotic treatment and that more than 100 cycles of antibiotic exposure would be needed for partial resistance mutations to become established in a population. These findings suggest that new drugs, or drug combinations, that decrease tolerance may help deter the evolution of resistance.
-end-


American Association for the Advancement of Science

Related Antibiotics Articles from Brightsurf:

Insights in the search for new antibiotics
A collaborative research team from the University of Oklahoma, the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Merck & Co. published an opinion article in the journal, Nature Chemical Biology, that addresses the gap in the discovery of new antibiotics.

New tricks for old antibiotics
The study published in the journal Immunity reveals that tetracyclines (broad spectre antibiotics), by partially inhibiting cell mitochondria activity, induce a compensatory response on the organism that decreases tissue damage caused during infection.

Benefits, risks seen with antibiotics-first for appendicitis
Antibiotics are a good choice for some patients with appendicitis but not all, according to study results published today in the New England Journal of Medicine.

How antibiotics interact
Understanding bottleneck effects in the translation of bacterial proteins can lead to a more effective combination of antibiotics / study in 'Nature Communications'

Are antivitamins the new antibiotics?
Antibiotics are among the most important discoveries of modern medicine and have saved millions of lives since the discovery of penicillin almost 100 years ago.

Hygiene reduces the need for antibiotics by up to 30%
A new paper published in the American Journal of Infection Control (AJIC), finds improved everyday hygiene practices, such as hand-washing, reduces the risk of common infections by up to 50%, reducing the need for antibiotics, by up to 30%.

Antibiotics: City dwellers and children take the most
City dwellers take more antibiotics than people in rural areas; children and the elderly use them more often than middle-aged people; the use of antibiotics decreases as education increases, but only in rich countries: These are three of the more striking trends identified by researchers of the NRW Forschungskolleg ''One Health and Urban Transformation'' at the University of Bonn.

Metals could be the link to new antibiotics
Compounds containing metals could hold the key to the next generation of antibiotics to combat the growing threat of global antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotics from the sea
The team led by Prof. Christian Jogler of Friedrich Schiller University, Jena, has succeeded in cultivating several dozen marine bacteria in the laboratory -- bacteria that had previously been paid little attention.

Antibiotics not necessary for most toothaches, according to new ADA guideline
The American Dental Association (ADA) announced today a new guideline indicating that in most cases, antibiotics are not recommended for toothaches.

Read More: Antibiotics News and Antibiotics Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.