CA-MRSA study targets new strains
NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Dec. 10, 2007
Newly described proteins in drug-resistant strains of the Staphylococcus aureus bacterium were found to attract and then destroy protective human white blood cells, a key process that ensures the survival of S. aureus and also causes severe disease, according to scientists at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
In a study published last month in Nature Medicine online, scientists describe how members of the phenol-soluble modulin protein family help determine disease severity and eliminate immune defense mechanisms against community-associated methicillin-resistant S. aureus.
CA-MRSA has become a dangerous infection that is increasingly resistant to most antibiotics.
"Understanding what makes the infections caused by these new strains so severe and developing new drugs to treat them are urgent public health priorities," said NIAID Director Anthony S. Fauci, MD.
Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2007/12/10/hlbf1210.htm.