Friday, 04 May 2012 11:36
May 4, 2012
Engineers recently designed nanoparticles capable of delivering high doses of antibiotics directly to bacteria.
Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Brigham and Women's Hospital said this week they had successfully crafted a nanoparticle capable of evading detection by a person's immune system. The advance in engineering research and development serves as a major step in the ongoing work to develop increasingly effective medical therapies, the scientists said.
Teams of scientists have struggled to develop targeted antibiotics over the past decade, as traditional drugs have become less effective in fighting such infections. Antibiotic resistance has impacted the efficacy of a host of critically important medications, and without advances in the field, experts are worried that once-eradicated bacterial infections could soon spur serious illnesses.
The new nanoparticle the researchers engineered is able to home in on infection sites, where it can then release targeted treatments. Such a system, the researchers noted, would mitigate the side effects of a number of antiobiotic treatments. What's more, it would also not interfere with the production of bacteria in the stomach and gastrointestinal tract that are important in the breakdown of foods and other substances.
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