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Artificial Virus killed Antibiotic resistant bacteria (superbug) without any toxicity

February 11, 2020

Artificial Virus killed Antibiotic resistant
bacteria (superbug) without any toxicity Artificial virus is able to kill antibiotic
resistant bacteria known as superbug without causing any toxicity invivo and invitro. An
artificial virus capable of attacking superbug infections, resistant to antibiotics has been
bioengineered by researchers. The rise of superbugs is a serious concern
in the medical community as bacteria evolve to escape existing antibiotic treatments and
there are least hope for newer antibiotics to hit the market any soon. To pursue such a feat, this interdisciplinary
research team adopted the geometric principles of the virus architecture to engineer a synthetic
biologic – protein Ψ-capsid – which assembles from a small molecular motif found in human
cells. This motif can recognize pathogen-associated molecular patterns on bacterial surfaces but
by itself is weakly antimicrobial. By contrast, each capsid, which comprises multiple copies
of the motif, delivers an influx of high antimicrobial doses in its precise binding position on a
bacterial cell. Using a combination of nanoscale and single-cell
imaging the team demonstrated that the capsids inflict irreparable damage to bacteria, rapidly
converting into nanopores in their membranes and reaching intracellular targets. The capsids
were equally effective in either of their chiral forms, which can render them invisible
to the immune system of the host, killing different bacteria phenotypes and superbugs
without cytotoxicity in vitro and in vivo. The findings, reported in ACS Nano, demonstrate
how bioengineering and multi-modal measurements can offer and validate innovative solutions
to healthcare, building on natural disease-fighting capabilities.

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