Unlocking the mysteries of proteins to counter antibiotic resistance

Even if we somehow survive global warming there’s another threat almost certain to get us. Once again LSS returns to the theme of antibiotic resistance, when organisms like E. coli become so resistant to our drugs that they multiply as they like and kill us all. Horribly.

We’ve used these blogs often to discuss progress in antibiotic research, and also more outre ideas like the use of AI and bacteriophages (LSS passim) Now a new approach is being pioneered by Cesar de la Fuente of the University of Pennsylvania, in collaboration with the University of Naples. Using AI algorithms they are scanning the body’s vast storehouse of proteins and peptides, and discovering many hitherto unsuspected properties. Most exciting for us, gentle readers, is that many of these naturally produced molecules seem to have strong antimicrobial functions. This raises the possibility of a third method of treatment to run alongside improvements to to conventional antibiotics,and improvements to the immune system like mRNA vaccines.

Raul Limon‘s article for El Pais is a useful summary of Cesar’s work, and on progress generally in this field. English readers, be warned: you’ll need your translation app.


#protein #peptide #antibiotic #nature #bioscience #antimicrobials

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