Nanoparticles subdue antibiotic-resistant bacteria’s defences while enhancing innate immunity

A method for overcoming antibiotic resistance uses multimodal nanoparticles that target bacterial defence mechanisms while enhancing the innate immune response. The rise in antibiotic resistance is considered a slow-moving medical catastrophe, as these revolutionary drugs that have kept us relatively safe from bacterial infection for decades are losing their efficacy. In part due to their co-evolution, bacterial pathogens have developed mechanisms to resist almost every antibiotic on the market and we are in desperate need for new, innovative approaches. Writing in Nature Nanotechnology, Zhu et al. present a nanoparticle-based possibility, in which they target bacterial defence mechanisms while simultaneously enhancing the ability of the host immune cells to fight infection.

Treating Antimicrobial Resistant Infections: A Nano-scale Approach with Big Impacts

Antimicrobial-resistant (AMR) infections are predicted to kill 10 million people each year by 2050—up from 700,000 in 2019—and force 24 million people into extreme poverty as early as 2030. Yet, the pharmaceutical industry has divested from the antibiotic resistance crisis, investing instead in more lucrative types of drugs.