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publicado em 13/04/2011 às 03h00:00
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Manuka honey can reverse bacterial resistance to antibiotics

Substance interferes with the growth of bacteria and an attractive option for treatment of resistant infections

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Manuka Honey can be an efficient way to clean wounds chronically infected and help reverse bacterial resistance to antibiotics. The discovery by researchers from the University of Wales Institute, UK.

The study's leader, Rose Cooper and her colleagues evaluated as honey interacts with three types of bacteria that commonly infect wounds: Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Group A Streptococci and Methicillin aureus resistant to methicillin (MRSA).

Study results show that honey may interfere with the growth of bacteria in a variety of forms and suggests that it is an attractive option for treating drug-resistant infections.

How it works

Honey has been recognized for its antimicrobial properties. Traditional medicines containing honey were used in the topical treatment of wounds by various ancient civilizations.

Manuka honey is derived from the nectar collected by bees foraging in the manuka tree in New Zealand and is licensed for wound care in the world. However, the antimicrobial properties of honey have not been fully explored by modern medicine as their mechanisms of action are not yet known.

The research team of Cooper is helping to solve this problem by investigating the molecular level in ways that Manuka honey inhibits bacteria from infected wounds.

"Our results suggest that streptococci and pseudomonas Manuka honey can impede the attachment of bacteria to tissues, which is an essential step for the initiation of acute infections. Inhibiting the setting, it also blocks the formation of biofilms, which may protect the bacteria of antibiotics and allow them to cause persistent infections, "explained Cooper.

Other works of researchers have shown that honey can make MRSA more sensitive to antibiotics such as oxacillin - effectively reversing resistance to antibiotics.

For researchers, this indicates that existing antibiotics may be more effective against drug-resistant infections, if used in combination with Manuka honey.

The research may increase the clinical use of Manuka honey as the doctors are faced with the threat of antimicrobial options decreasingly effective.

"We need innovative and effective ways to control infections in wounds that are unlikely to contribute to increasing antimicrobial resistance. We have shown that Manuka honey does not increase resistance to antibiotics," said Professor Cooper.

Currently, most antimicrobial interventions for patients is intravenous antibiotics.

The use of a topical agent for eradicating bacteria from wounds is potentially cheaper and may well improve the antibiotic in the future. This will help reduce transmission of antibiotic resistant bacteria colonized wound to susceptible patients. "

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