Scientists at MIT show that wasp venom serves as a potent antibiotic



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In a study in rats, the researchers found that their stronger peptide could completely eliminate Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a strain of bacteria that causes respiratory and other infections, and is resistant to most antibiotics.

A group of researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has discovered that wasp venom allows the creation of an antibiotic drug, reports the Daily Mail.

In a study in rats, researchers found that its strongest peptide could completely eliminate Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a variety of bacteria that cause respiratory and other infections, and are resistant to most antibiotics.

"We reuse a toxic molecule in one that is a viable molecule to treat infections," he says. César de la Fuente-Núnez, one of the authors of the article published in the journal Biology of Nature Communications. "By systematically analyzing the structure and function of these peptides, we have been able to adjust their properties and activities," he continues.

The insect venom, like wasps and bees, is full of compounds that can kill bacteria, but which are also toxic to humans. To help fight the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, many scientists have tried to adapt these peptides as potential new medicines.

The peptide that De la Fuente-Núñez and his colleagues focused on in this study was isolated from a wasp known as Polybia paulista. The team selected the most promising compounds to test in mice infected with Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a common source of respiratory and urinary tract infections, and found that several of the peptides could reduce infection. One of them, administered in high dose, could eliminate it completely.

"After four days, this compound can completely eliminate the infectionAnd that was quite surprising and exciting because we do not usually see this with other experimental antimicrobials or other antibiotics we have tried in the past with this particular mouse model, "says De la Fuente Núñez.

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