In this false-colored image, individual cells of Pseudomonas aeruginosa (green) can be seen resting on the fibrous surface of a biofilm (purple) that helps protect cells beneath its surface. At top right, two cells incorporated within the biofilm peek out from a fissure in the film's surface. CREDIT Debra Weinstein, Sao-Mai Nguyen-Mau, and Vincent Lee

In this false-colored image, individual cells of Pseudomonas aeruginosa (green) can be seen resting on the fibrous surface of a biofilm (purple) that helps protect cells beneath its surface. At top right, two cells incorporated within the biofilm peek out from a fissure in the film’s surface. Credit: Debra Weinstein, Sao-Mai Nguyen-Mau, and Vincent Lee.

Overview: Researchers at the University of Maryland have discovered the signaling molecule, called cyclic-di-GMP, which activates biofilm formation. The most virulent classification of bacteria falls into the Gram-negative group and they are all known as biofilm producers. Members of this group include: Helicobacter pylori, E. coli, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, Haemophilus influenzae, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Legionella pneumophila, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and many others. Biofilm is a protective coating or shield; made-up of sugars, DNA and protein; that enables these bacteria to evade detection and makes them almost impossible to kill.

Very soon we will have a proven way to disrupt these bacteria created force-fields and break them it down. Either through bioengineering other bacteria or synthesising enzymes which can be administered directly to a wound or through pharmaceutical administration. Until this day, we still have our hands tied when it comes to easily or successfully treating infections caused by gram-negative bacteria.

Original Article: ‘Off switch’ enzyme in biofilms identified to prevent formation 

Marcus Ettinger

Medical Detective & Digestion Coach at Advanced Healing Center of Orange
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