Friday April 27, 2018

New test may prevent antibiotic resistances from spreading

Thereby, physicians would hold a powerful tool from which they could benefit in personalised therapy -- this means the administration of a fitting drug, the researchers said

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Overuse of Antibiotic pills has resulted in development of drug resilient bacterias,, Pixabay
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  • Scientists have found a new kind of test
  • This may prevent antibiotic resistance
  • The new method also provides faster diagnosis

Scientists have developed a new “rapid test” that produces a cheaper and faster diagnosis of infectious diseases in just three hours thus preventing antibiotic resistance from spreading.

Owing to small number of pathogens in a patient’s sample, standard practices require up to 72 hours to allow for a reliable result for the infectious diagnostics. The new method provides much faster diagnosis with the help of tiny electrodes that are fixed on the surface of a stamp-sized chip.

Drug overdose
This new test will stop antibiotic resistance. Pixabay

“Electric fields secure bacteria in a very small area,” said Ute Neugebauer from the Friedrich Schiller University Jena in Germany. The scientists then apply various antibiotics in different concentrations on the trapped bacteria and examine them with Raman spectroscopy.

“This means that we irradiate the pathogens with laser light and evaluate the scattered light spectrum”, Neugebauer said. “We combine light-based analytical methods with microfluidic sample processing. With our Lab-on-a-Chip system, thus a miniaturised lab, we are able to clearly identify bacterial strains and their resistances, in less than three hours,” he explained.

Also Read: Asthma Afflicted Children Are Prescribed Unwanted Antibiotics: Study

The combination of fast, light-based diagnostics and a high automation level reduces the time from sampling to result from to date 72 to three and a half hours.

The doctors can then derive whether the strain is resistant or sensible. At the same time they can also derive information on the needed concentration of the antibiotic to constrain bacterial growth.

The test will also lead to faster diagnosis. Wikimedia Commons
The test will also lead to faster diagnosis. Wikimedia Commons

“This is an important diagnostic parameter that influences the success of a treatment decidedly…such a fast procedure could revolutionise diagnostics of infectious diseases”, the researchers said, in a paper published in the journal Analytical Chemistry.

Another, more far-reaching, the aim is the further development of a cartridge-based rapid test system, which will enable general practitioners to identify resistances in a fast and easy way for the first time. Thereby, physicians would hold a powerful tool from which they could benefit in personalised therapy — this means the administration of a fitting drug, the researchers said. IANS

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‘Epilepsy drug during pregnancy ups the oral cleft risk in babies’

The findings are based on data on more than one million live births over a period of 10 years in the US.

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Low doses of topiramate may also increase the risk of oral clefts but to a lesser extent. Wikimedia Commons
Low doses of topiramate may also increase the risk of oral clefts but to a lesser extent. Wikimedia Commons

The study, published in the journal Neurology, said the risk is particularly high when the drug is used in high doses. “Our results suggest that the increased risk of oral clefts is most pronounced in women taking higher doses of topiramate to treat epilepsy,” said study co-author Elisabetta Patorno of Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, US.

“Low doses of topiramate may also increase the risk of oral clefts but to a lesser extent,” Patorno said. “We hope that this work gives important information to women and their clinicians as they determine the best course of treatment and options available to individuals,” Patorno added. The findings are based on data on more than one million live births over a period of 10 years in the US.

Epilepsy is likely due to the higher doses of topiramate when used for controlling seizures. Wikimedia Commons
Epilepsy is likely due to the higher doses of topiramate when used for controlling seizures. Wikimedia Commons

The team examined the risk of oral clefts including cleft palate or cleft lip among three groups infants born to women who had taken topiramate in their first trimester; infants born to women who had taken the drug lamotrigine (an unrelated drug used to treat bipolar disorder and epilepsy); and infants who had not been exposed to anti-epileptic medications in utero.

The researchers found that the risk of oral clefts was approximately three times higher for the topiramate group than for either the lamotrigine or the unexposed group.

“Our results suggest that women with epilepsy on topiramate have the highest relative risk of giving birth to a baby with cleft lip or cleft palate, likely due to the higher doses of topiramate when used for controlling seizures,” said corresponding author Sonia Hernandez-Diaz of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “The best course may be to avoid prescribing high doses of topiramate to women of childbearing age unless the benefits clearly outweigh the risks,” she added. IANS