Dutch Technology Combats Antimicrobial Resistance
Dutch biotech company Micreos has developed an effective way to treat Staphylococcus aureus infections using endolysins. Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a growing concern worldwide. According to a UK report, by 2050, if left unchecked, the annual death toll from bacterial infections in Europe alone could rise to 10 million.
Staphefekt targets bad bacteria
Endolysins are enzymes produced by bacteriophages to break down bacteria cell walls. Technology using endolysins circumvents antibiotics’ two major disadvantages: it does not cause resistance and it does not kill good bacteria, but only those it is intended for. Staphefekt, the endolysin registered by Micreos, has been successfully made into an aseptic liquid solution and creams and gels. These can be used to treat skin conditions with an infectious component.
Tackling the MRSA problem
Staphylococcus aureus is a bacteria that many people carry and is usually harmless. However, if its resistant variant, called MRSA, causes an infection, it can be very hard to treat and even deadly. MRSA is also known as a ‘superbug’ and is becoming a more common problem, especially in hospitals where people with reduced immunity can get serious infections. Staphefekt has been shown to be effective on MRSA, a very exciting application of Micreos’ endolysin technology.
Micreos won the Most Impactful Innovation Award at the Ideas from Europe/Making Waves event in September 2017 and will take part in the European finals in November 2017. Micreos is enthusiastic to find partnerships for new trials.