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Scientists developed a new drug Staphefekt to replace antibiotics

Scientists developed antibiotic-free drug named Staphefekt as an alternative for antibiotics.

Nov 7, 2014 17:59 IST
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Scientists for the first time developed antibiotic-free drug named Staphefekt as an alternative to antibiotics. This new drug will aid in the fight against the antibiotics-resistant superbugs such as MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus).
In the study, the drug was proven to eliminate MRSA in five out of six patients with skin infections.

About Staphefekt
Staphefekt is based on a naturally occurring enzyme called endolysins produced by viruses and attacks infections differently to antibiotics. Unlike antibiotics, it does not destroy the harmless bacteria that live in the body.

Endolysins (enzymes) exist in nature but the scientist made a modified version that combines the bit that is best at binding to the bacteria with another bit so that it is best at killing it.

Conventional antibiotics need to reach the inside of the cell to work, and certain strains of bacteria such as MRSA, have evolved impenetrable membranes so that it becomes less effective.

Besides, Endolysins is less prone to resistance induction than antibiotics and it will destroy only their target bacterial species.

Staphefekt is already used as a cream to treat skin infections and researchers hope to create pill and injectable forms in future.

Healthcare experts looking for the alternative for antibiotics because 5000 deaths in a year are linked to drug resistance diseases.

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