According to the World Health Organization (WHO), antibiotic resistance is one of the top ten threats to global health. As per an estimate, antibiotic-resistant bacteria are already responsible for causing about 1.3m deaths a year worldwide. WHO also stressed the need to search for ways to tackle resistant bacteria and also reducing the use of antibiotics.
Now, researchers at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden have developed a new spray that can kill even antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The spray is designed to be used for wound care and application on biomedical implants.
Martin Andersson, head of research for the study, said, “Our innovation can have a dual impact in the fight against antibiotic resistance. The material has been shown to be effective against many different types of bacteria, including those that are resistant to antibiotics, such as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), while also having the potential to prevent infections and thus reduce the need for antibiotics,”
In the spray, the peptide molecules are attached to specially structured microparticles of a hydrogel. Hydrogel particles provide a protective environment and increase the stability of the peptides. This helps them to work along with body fluids like blood, which otherwise inactivates the peptides.
“The substance in this wound spray is completely non-toxic and does not affect human cells,” said doctoral student Edvin Blomstrand, one of the lead authors of a paper on the study. “Unlike existing bactericidal sprays, it does not inhibit the body’s healing process. The materials, which are simply sprayed onto the wound, can also kill the bacteria in a shorter time.”
The paper was recently published in the journal ASC Applied Bio Materials.