Phage therapies for superbug infections are being tested in Belgium

Phage therapies for superbug infections are being tested in Belgium

Phage, Bacteriophage

1/19/2022 12:11:00 PM

Phage therapies for superbug infections are being tested in Belgium

Bacteria-killing viruses can be used to treat antibiotic-resistant superbugs, and the approach has been tried in more than 100 people in Belgium since a 2019 change in regulations

.One of the doctors, Anaïs Eskenazi, decided to try phage therapy. A sample of the bacterium was sent tothe Eliava Institute in Tbilisi, Georgia, to find a phage that could kill it. The Eliava Institute has been using phage therapy to treat infections since the 1920s.

After finding such a phage, the institute evolved the virus to make it even better at killing the bacterium. The therapy was ready to go ahead by November 2016, but was put on hold because some doctors were concerned about safety and efficacy.“At the time there was very little scientific literature about the use of phage except in countries where phage therapy has been used for a long time, like Georgia and Poland,” says Eskenazi, now at the Cayenne Hospital Center in French Guiana.

Read more: New Scientist »

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What about a super virus? This has been known for 100 years; practised in Eastern Europe for much of that time. The west was distracted by antibiotics at last! I thought a phage was a virus-killing bacteria? Cool microscopic assistants.Wish I thought of that.✔️🕶️ thats why trump shut the goddamm border and any new bug crops up is DEMOCRATS fucking fault

What population are all these bacteria coming from. What behaviors are causing this. I think Phage Therapy can be the way out of getting resistent bacteria strains caused from antibiotics. Im so excited to read more about it. We should have done more research with it in the past here in germany.

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to almost all drugs . One of the doctors, Anaïs Eskenazi, decided to try phage therapy. A sample of the bacterium was sent to the Eliava Institute in Tbilisi , Georgia, to find a phage that could kill it. The Eliava Institute has been using phage therapy to treat infections since the 1920s. After finding such a phage, the institute evolved the virus to make it even better at killing the bacterium. The therapy was ready to go ahead by November 2016, but was put on hold because some doctors were concerned about safety and efficacy. “At the time there was very little scientific literature about the use of phage except in countries where phage therapy has been used for a long time, like Georgia and Poland,” says Eskenazi, now at the Cayenne Hospital Center in French Guiana. By February 2018, the woman was still not improving, and she was finally treated with the phage in combination with antibiotics. Within weeks, her condition improved, and her broken femur finally began to heal. She is now able to walk again, usually with crutches, and is taking part in sports such as cycling. Despite results such as this, there are several obstacles to using phage therapy more widely. Phages are specific to particular bacteria, and those bacteria can quickly evolve resistance, says Ben Temperton at the University of Exeter, UK. Evolving or “pre-adapting” phages, as the Eliava Institute did, reduces resistance but takes time. “Patients have typically been on a long journey of failed antibiotic regimens before phages are considered,” says Temperton. Read more: How bacteria-killing viruses are being used to keep food safe There are efforts to develop “off-the-shelf” phage therapies containing a cocktail of different phage types – the idea being at least one will work – but these would require continual tweaking to ensure they remain effective. “When possible, doctors should prefer the use of pre-adapted phage with antibiotics to obtain the phage-antibiotic synergy, which makes the treatment very effective,” Eskenazi says. These issues make it hard to get regulatory approval. At the time the woman was treated, Eskenazi had to get special approval to try phage therapy. This remains the case in most countries, which is why