Ointment kills antibiotic-resistant bacteria, promotes wound healing

Topical drug AB569 could be effective against so-called ‘superbugs,’ researcher says

A Drug-Resistant Superbug Is Spreading in Hospitals

Research at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine may have added a weapon to hospitals’ bacteria fighting arsenal.

Using the topical drug called AB569 — a combination of acidified nitrite and ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid — promotes killing of antibiotic-resistant bacteria while enhancing the healing of wounds in a variety of burn injuries, the study found. The study was published in the journal Infection and Immunity.

Daniel Hassett, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics, Biochemistry and Microbiology at the UC College of Medicine, patented AB569 in 2018. His research has found that AB569 kills virtually all pathogenic bacteria tested. Those bacteria are some of the most serious pathogens exhibiting multidrug resistance and enhanced virulence properties, according to the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Multidrug resistant bacteria, often called ‘superbugs,’ are an ever-burgeoning global health problem,” Hassett said. “As a result, there is a critical need to develop novel and effective antimicrobials for the prevention, treatment and eradication and healing of such wounds that are complicated by the most formidable pathogen of burn patients, known as MDR-PA. Injury severity is predominantly due to potentially lethal sepsis caused by MDR-PA.”

According to the university’s announcement in Medical Xpress, AB569 was first seen as a treatment for antibiotic-resistant organisms that cause pulmonary infections in patients with cystic fibrosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and many other opportunistic infections. In addition to tackling COPD and cystic fibrosis, AB569 may also be effective in addressing infections related to severe burns, urinary tract disorders, endocarditis and diabetes, Hassett said.

“This study provides solid foundational evidence that AB569 can be used topically to treat highly problematic dermal (injuries) including wound, burn, blast and likely diabetic infections in civilian and military populations and help relieve the economical burden that MDR organisms have on the global health care system,” he added.

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