“Combining antibiotics changes their effectiveness”
“Depending on the bacterial species, some combinations stop antibiotics from working to their full potential whilst others begin to defeat antibiotic resistance, report EMBL researchers and collaborators in Nature on July 4.
In the first large-scale screening of its kind, scientists profiled almost 3000 drug combinations on three different disease-causing bacteria. The research was led by EMBL group leader Nassos Typas.
Overcoming antibiotic resistance
Overuse and misuse of antibiotics has led to widespread antibiotic resistance. Specific combinations of drugs can help in fighting multi-drug resistant bacterial infections, but they are largely unexplored and rarely used in clinics. That is why in the current paper, the team systematically studied the effect of antibiotics paired with each other, as well as with other drugs and food additives in different species.
Whilst many of the investigated drug combinations lessened the antibiotics’ effect, there were over 500 drug combinations which improved antibiotic outcome. A selection of these positive pairings was also tested in multi-drug resistant bacteria, isolated from infected hospital patients, and were found to improve antibiotic effects.”