Antibacterial peptide could aid in treating soldiers' burn wound infections

September 01, 2010

An antibacterial peptide developed by Laszlo Otvos, a research professor of biology in Temple's College of Science and Technology, looks to be a highly-effective therapy against infections in burn or blast wounds suffered by soldiers.

Otvos and his collaborators found that when given intramuscularly the peptide A3-APO was more effective than current antimicrobial chemotherapy measures in treating multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii, the most common systemic infection found in soldiers who suffer burn or blast wounds. The peptide is also highly efficacious in models of multi-drug resistant systemic Escherichia coli infections.

Their findings are being published in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy.

Otvos said that 40 percent of gowns and gloves in military hospitals are infected with Acinetobacter baumannii, and half of the soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with burn wounds will become infected.

Currently, these infections are treated with an antibiotic, either imipenem or colistin. However, both of these rapidly lose efficacy due to high rates of antimicrobial resistance. In addition, colistin is a strongly toxic drug and worldwide research is focusing on its replacement options.

For their study, the researchers used a strain of Acinetobacter baumannii isolated from an injured Canadian soldier returning from Afghanistan for testing in the lab. They found that A3-APO, when given intramuscularly, was less toxic and more effective in reducing bacterial counts in the blood and the injury site than imipenem or colistin. The peptide also protected open wounds from environmental bacterial infection.

"This is the first peptide ever that is more efficacious in an animal model than anything else that is available," said Otvos, who hopes the peptide can be tested in clinical trials in the near future.
-end-
Copies of this study are available to working journalists and may be obtained by contacting Preston M. Moretz in Temple's Office of University Communications at pmoretz@temple.edu.

Temple University

Related Biology Articles from Brightsurf:

Experimental Biology press materials available now
Though the Experimental Biology (EB) 2020 meeting was canceled in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, EB research abstracts are being published in the April 2020 issue of The FASEB Journal.

Structural biology: Special delivery
Bulky globular proteins require specialized transport systems for insertion into membranes.

Cell biology: All in a flash!
Scientists of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have developed a tool to eliminate essential proteins from cells with a flash of light.

A biology boost
Assistance during the first years of a biology major leads to higher retention of first-generation students.

Cell biology: Compartments and complexity
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich biologists have taken a closer look at the subcellular distribution of proteins and metabolic intermediates in a model plant.

Cell biology: The complexity of division by two
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich researchers have identified a novel protein that plays a crucial role in the formation of the mitotic spindle, which is essential for correct segregation of a full set of chromosomes to each daughter cell during cell division.

Cell biology: Dynamics of microtubules
Filamentous polymers called microtubules play vital roles in chromosome segregation and molecular transport.

The biology of color
Scientists are on a threshold of a new era of color science with regard to animals, according to a comprehensive review of the field by a multidisciplinary team of researchers led by professor Tim Caro at UC Davis.

Kinky biology
How and why proteins fold is a problem that has implications for protein design and therapeutics.

A new tool to decipher evolutionary biology
A new bioinformatics tool to compare genome data has been developed by teams from the Max F.

Read More: Biology News and Biology 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.