20 June 2024
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Antibiotic failure key subpopulation identified by scientists. Antibiotic overuse can lead to antibiotic resistance, but classic antibiotic resistance might not completely explain why antibiotics sometimes fail. Sub-populations of bacteria called persister cells can survive in the presence of lethal doses of antibiotics for prolonged periods. Although persister cells have been intensively researched, evidence linking them to poor patient outcomes has been limited.

Antibiotic Failure Key Subpopulation: Persister Cells



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Hi everyone, I’m here today to talk about a recent study that has shed light on a possible explanation for why antibiotics sometimes fail. As you may know, antibiotic overuse can lead to antibiotic resistance, but classic antibiotic resistance might not completely explain why antibiotics sometimes fail.

Persister Cells: The Key Subpopulation Responsible for Antibiotic Failure

Scientists have discovered a subpopulation of bacteria called persister cells that can survive in the presence of lethal doses of antibiotics for prolonged periods. These persister cells are thought to be responsible for the failure of antibiotics in some cases.

Evidence Linking Persister Cells to Poor Patient Outcomes in Antibiotic Failure

Although persister cells have been studied extensively, evidence linking them to poor patient outcomes has been limited. However, a recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) has provided strong evidence supporting the importance of persister cells in the clinic.

Study Findings: Persister Cells Contribute to Antibiotic Failure

The study, led by scientists from UNC School of Medicine and Duke School of Medicine, found that E. coli can evolve in patients to produce increased persister cells, leading to increased survival to antibiotics. The researchers used a combination of patient data, clinical isolates, and animal models to show that persister cells contribute to antibiotic failure when classic antibiotic resistance does not explain such failure.

Implications for Treatment: New Strategies to Combat Antibiotic Failure

This study suggests that persister formation is likely a significant contributor to antibiotic treatment failure in patients. It also highlights the need for researchers to develop techniques to identify mutants that are likely to respond poorly to antibiotics and to develop new therapeutic approaches to target and kill persisters.

Conclusion: Importance of Persister Cells in Antibiotic Failure

In conclusion, this study provides strong evidence supporting the importance of persister cells in the clinic. It also emphasizes the need for further research to develop new strategies to combat antibiotic resistance and improve patient outcomes.

FAQ’s

1. What are persister cells?

Persister cells are a subpopulation of bacteria that can survive in the presence of lethal doses of antibiotics for prolonged periods.

2. How do persister cells contribute to antibiotic failure?

Persister cells can survive antibiotic treatment and lead to recurrent infections, even in patients who initially respond well to antibiotics.

3. What evidence suggests that persister cells are linked to poor patient outcomes?

A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) found that E. coli can evolve in patients to produce increased persister cells, leading to increased survival to antibiotics. The researchers used a combination of patient data, clinical isolates, and animal models to show that persister cells contribute to antibiotic failure when classic antibiotic resistance does not explain such failure.

4. What are the implications of this study for treatment?

This study suggests that persister formation is likely a significant contributor to antibiotic treatment failure in patients. It also highlights the need for researchers to develop techniques to identify mutants that are likely to respond poorly to antibiotics and to develop new therapeutic approaches to target and kill persisters.

5. What are the next steps in research on persister cells?

Researchers are working to develop new strategies to combat antibiotic resistance and improve patient outcomes. This includes developing new antibiotics that target persister cells, as well as developing new methods to prevent the formation of persister cells.

Links to additional Resources:

1. www.nature.com/articles/s41420-022-01102-8 2. www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960982222003465 3. www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8845360/

Related Wikipedia Articles

Topics: Persister cells, Antibiotic resistance, Antibiotic failure

Persister cells
Persister cells are subpopulations of cells that resist treatment, and become antimicrobial tolerant by changing to a state of dormancy or quiescence. Persister cells in their dormancy do not divide. The tolerance shown in persister cells differs from antimicrobial resistance in that the tolerance is not inherited and is reversible....
Read more: Persister cells

Antimicrobial resistance
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) occurs when microbes evolve mechanisms that protect them from the effects of antimicrobials (drugs used to treat infections). All classes of microbes can evolve resistance where the drugs are no longer effective. Fungi evolve antifungal resistance, viruses evolve antiviral resistance, protozoa evolve antiprotozoal resistance, and bacteria evolve...
Read more: Antimicrobial resistance

Antibiotic
An antibiotic is a type of antimicrobial substance active against bacteria. It is the most important type of antibacterial agent for fighting bacterial infections, and antibiotic medications are widely used in the treatment and prevention of such infections. They may either kill or inhibit the growth of bacteria. A limited...
Read more: Antibiotic

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