Treating antibiotic-resistant infections with peptides inspired by human saliva

Updated: Nov 28


Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is one of the biggest public health threats of the era impacting advances in surgery, wound healing, cancer treatment, organ transplants, and other areas of modern medicine by decreasing our ability to control infections. Without accelerated efforts in diagnostic and therapeutic developments, it is projected to kill ~10 million people every year by 2050.


Amidst this global challenge, there is exciting news from the University of Minnesota that could impact how we treat AMR bacterial infections.


Inspired by the structure of the human salivary protein, BPIFA2, scientists examined an antibacterial peptide and its potential impact on drug-resistant bacteria. They focused on whether it could kill common drug-resistant bacteria, bacterial biofilms, and whether the bacteria would become resistant to the new peptide or not. The team of scientists found a potent in vitro activity against multidrug-resistant bacteria tested. They hope it will be equally effective against nasty MDR pathogens like Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Acinetobacter baumannii, with which very few existing antibiotics work. While we wait for the clinical development of such exciting drugs, minimizing the development of MDR by promptly and accurately diagnosing the infections with diagnostic kits like Acutis Reveal™ is the best approach to date.

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