May 11, 2017

This is why you will die.

Happy, happy, joy, joy! Today we get a chance to talk about DEATH!

Everyone is dying! From the moment you are born there is one certainty to your life and that is that it will reach an end. We all will arrive there but how and when we arrive there is the subject of debate.

I recently touched base with a friend (whom I have to follow up with) and found he was another one of those folks who had faced a really significant health struggle due to MRSA.

This was the second time in recent months I had heard of someone being stricken with something along those lines and unfortunately it’s one of those things that appears to be happening with much more frequency as the days pass.

We worry about a lot of things in this world but we may be taking a trip to the good old days very soon and by good old days I mean a time when we didn’t have the luxury of antibiotics to overcome infections.

Yes friends, the fact of the matter is that new antibiotics are not in the pipeline and that isn’t like changing soon...
Although society wants pharmaceutical companies to research and develop new antibiotics, policy-makers do not want healthcare professionals to use them. In other words, products should sit on the shelf until they are really needed by patients because of the antimicrobial resistance problem through the imprudent use of antibiotics over the years.

Furthermore, if antibiotics are used, they are generally used for the short-term, not like the long-term therapies that help bring in revenues for companies.

“The reason why many companies dropped out from the anti-infectives [field] was because of the [lack of] return on investment,” says Klaus Dembowsky, chief medical officer of Polythor, which recently licensed its investigational antibiotic POL7080 (which targets “superbug” Pseudomonas species) to Roche.
Yep and it’s not as if people in charge aren’t aware of it (this is from 6 years ago!):
“MRSA continues to be a major cause of community-acquired antibiotic resistant infections,” says Dr Brad Spellberg, one of the authors of the 2004 IDSA report Bad bugs, no drugs. “However, because companies in the late 1980s and early 1990s recognized the threat of MRSA, starting in 2000 we did get new MRSA drugs. Right now, we have reasonable antibiotics to treat MRSA. As resistance catches up with them, in the future we will have problems again.”
Frankly I worry about this myself given certain medical issues I face and the inclination of doctors to prescribe antibiotics to address those issues so I’m always a little resistant to antibiotics as a line of defense and you should be too.

You should worry about this:
And one of the things I like about the Pew Roadmap is that it recognizes that the biggest barriers to finding new classes of antibiotics aren’t really regulatory or financial ones: they’re scientific. The plan calls for efforts to produce new chemical matter in the property space that antibiotics tend to occupy, which is a rather weird one compared to most other drugs and not well served by current screening libraries.
But there’s hope and oddly enough as I was putting this together only yesterday word of a breakthrough was announced!
Scientists report that they now know how to build a molecular Trojan horse that can penetrate gram-negative bacteria, solving a problem that for decades has stalled the development of effective new antibiotics against these increasingly drug-resistant microbes. The findings appear in the journal Nature.

Led by University of Illinois chemistry professor Paul Hergenrother, the scientists tested their approach by modifying a drug that kills only gram-positive bacteria, which lack the rugged outer cell membrane that characterizes gram-negative microbes and makes them so difficult to combat. The modifications converted the drug into a broad-spectrum antibiotic that could also kill gram-negatives, the team reports.

Still that breakthrough is a ways off and I have to say one thing is to stay out of hospitals because if you are going to get MRSA a hospital will likely be the best place to pick it up.

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