Blocking death messages from S. aureus can halt bone disease
Nottingham/Dublin – Irish researchers have identified a new target in S.aureus bacteria that cause progressive bone destruction. According to Tania Claro from Royal College of Surgeons, S. aureus makes use of its surface protein Spa to attach to the bones and then transmits signals that prompt the bone cell to commit suicide. The findings, presented at the autumn Meeting of the Society for General
Microbiology in Nottingham (6-9 September 2010), can be used to search for Spa blockers that prevent osteomyelitis, a condition that affects mostly immunocompromised persons. Therapies that effectively prevent or treat osteomyelitis could greatly improve the quality of life of sufferers. "This disease is very painful for patients", said Claro. Current treatment involves prolonged aggressive antibiotic therapy, however this approach is often less than successful and surgical debridement is required.