Working Towards a New Rapid Method for Antibiotic Susceptibility Testing

Researchers at the University of California San Diego have recently reported a new method of determining antibiotic susceptibility in the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus, a very frequent and important source of infections in humans.

Many strains of Staph aureus are resistant to common antibiotics and thus antibiotic resistance testing plays an important role in managing these infections.

Current antibiotic susceptibility testing relies on observing whether bacteria can grow in the presence of particular antibiotics and may take several days to produce a result. The new method may reduce this time to less than a day since the bacteria only need to be grown in culture for a very short time.

The new method builds on previous work developing a microscopy-based method that looks at individual bacterial cells grown for a short time in the presence of an antibiotic. Professor Joe Pogliano who headed the research team says that; “When we combine careful culture conditions, cutting edge imaging methods and a detailed quantitative analysis, we can turn this simple approach into a reliable test.”

Just determining antibiotic resistance in one species of bacteria – Staph aureus is useful but the researchers are already working on making the test work for other species of bacteria that are commonly resistant to many antibiotics such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa.


Article source:
UC San Diego News Center  



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