David Jung Antoine Gaudreau-Lapierre Emran Alnahhas Samy Asraoui


Introduction: Streptococcus pneumoniae is a gram-positive bacterium, which is the leading cause of death for young children, elderly population, and immunocompromised patients. Its ability to mutate and become resistant to some of the strongest antibiotics makes them difficult to treat and increases the risk of disease spread. Although the development of stronger antibiotics to treat such microbes may be an option, they potentially pose a dangerous threat to the body. As such, a viable treatment option to fight against antimicrobial resistance has yet been found.

Methods: The study focuses on utilizing a bi-therapy system to target S. pneumoniae in biofilm, which is the site of emerging antibiotic resistant mutants, by creating levofloxacin-liposomes carrying phages and testing them both in vitro and in vivo.

Anticipated results: Using bacteriophage therapy and applying bacteriophage-antibiotic synergy, it is hoped to augment the potency of the treatment while lowering its side-effects. The Cp-1 bacteriophage-liposomes complexes are expected to be specific to the S. pneumoniae to carry antibiotics to sites of infection.

Discussion: The therapy could ensure targeted bacterial lysis and site-directed delivery of low-dose drugs to decrease the toxicity effect of the antibiotics. Once the efficacy is established and is proven to be significant, its potency can be tested in BALB/cByJ mice models before bringing this therapy to animal trials then human clinical trials.

Conclusion: Bacteriophages are very attractive therapeutic agents that effectively target pathogenic bacteria, safe for the human body, and highly modifiable to combat newly emerging bacterial threats. In addition to its many benefits, the use of bacteriophages could significantly reduce healthcare costs. The potential use of bacteriophages-liposomes complexes could be translated to treat respiratory infections in humans after confirming its efficacy in vitro and in vivo studies.

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Research Protocol