University of Regina microbiologist John Stavrinides says there is a long ways to go, but he and a group of researchers from both the U of R and the University of Saskatchewan have developed what he calls a “game-changer” when it comes to treating drug-resistant bacteria responsible for staph infections.
Stavrinides says the discovery could have several important implications.
“First, because the antibiotic is synthetic, it may be less prone to antibiotic resistance mechanisms already used by drug-resistant bacteria,” he said.
“Second, widespread antibiotic use results in antibiotic residuals accumulating in the general environment, contributing to the evolution of multi-drug resistance. But this antibiotic breaks down when exposed to light, so it is less likely to accumulate in the environment compared with other antibiotics. This may also help slow the evolution of resistance to our antibiotic.”
The research performed by the group was recently published in the online journal “Scientific Reports”
Stavrinides adds the types of compounds that have been synthesized have not been explored as potential antibiotics and that the group’s work will continue to be on synthesizing new molecules to look for other new antibiotics.