Bacteria are playing hide and seek with antibiotics.
Not all pathogenic bacteria need to evolve into super bugs to avoid harm from antibiotics. A new study suggests that some can effectively go into a state of hibernation and wait for the antibiotics to pass which results in chronic and persistent infections.
One of the ways antibiotics work is by preventing bacterial growth, so one of the strategies of remaining under the radar is to temporarily stunt bacterial growth while the antibiotics are present. "We studied E. coli bacteria from urinary tract infections that had been treated with antibiotics and were supposedly under control," explains Kenn Gerdes, one of the researchers on the new study. "In time, the bacteria re-awoke and began to spread once again." (Haridy, 2018)
While a bacteria in hibernation is not resistant; it is tolerant allowing it to survive the antibiotic protocol. Researcher are now setting out to discover how bacteria triggers the dormant phase. For instance E. coli bacteria can produce an enzyme that inhibits growth leading to a physiologically dormant state.
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Haridy, R. (2018, September 26). Study reveals how hibernating bacteria can hide from antibiotics. Retrieved from https://newatlas.com/dormant-bacteria-hibernate-antibiotic-resistance/56508/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=2018-09-26 143442 USA Daily Basic 2018-09-26 144456 Interstellar object Oumuamuas home narrowed down to four stars&utm_content=2018-09-26 143442 USA Daily Basic 2018-09-26 144456 Interstellar object Oumuamuas home narrowed down to four stars CID_0f86cdf5501e1f227f6c2ddcbead6a56&utm_source=Campaign Monitor&utm_term=Study reveals how hibernating bacteria can hide from antibiotics