Bacteria Protein Outer Coating Set for Attack

24 September, 2014


Scientists have found a new route to attack antibiotic-resistant bacteria by blocking the mechanism they use to build their exterior coating.

The bugs construct this defensive barrier in a complex process that depends on a key dual coating. Researchers are hoping to develop drugs which will interfere with this LptDE protein. Says Professor Changiang Dong from Norwich Medical School “We identified how LptDE builds up the outer membrane. It does this through a ‘path’ and a ‘gate’ and we have shown that if we block the path or the gate, the bacteria will die. To do this you would design and use another much smaller molecule. If the bacteria do not have the outer membrane, they cannot withstand environmental changes. It also makes it easier for the human immune system to kill them.”

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