One of those is the Phage Therapy Centre, an American-owned subsidiary which is bringing foreign patients to Tbilisi for phage treatments on diabetic foot, burns, ulcers, osteomyelitis, and drug-resistant infections such as MRSA. A course of treatment costs between US$8000 and $20 000.
Phages are currently being used therapeutically to treat bacterial infections that do not respond to conventional antibiotics, particularly in Russia and Georgia. There is also a phage therapy unit in Wrocław, Poland , established in 2005, the only such centre in a European Union country.
Phage therapy disadvantages Additionally, it’s not known if phage therapy may trigger bacteria to become stronger than the bacteriophage, resulting in phage resistance. Cons of phage therapy include the following: Phages are currently difficult to prepare for use in people and animals.
|Selecting new phages (e.g., against phage -resistant bacteria) is a relatively rapid process that can frequently be accomplished in days or weeks.||Developing a new antibiotic (e.g., against antibiotic-resistant bacteria) is a time-consuming process and may take several years (16, 51).|
Researchers have found that viruses can be a powerful tool that can be used against them. Specifically, a type of friendly virus called bacteriophage (sometimes referred to as just phage ) can be weaponized to fight even the most difficult bacterial infections.
When the phage infects a new bacterium, it introduces the original host bacterium’s DNA into the new bacterium. In this way, phages can introduce a gene that is harmful to humans (e.g., an antibiotic resistance gene or a toxin) from one bacterium to another.
The first US clinical trial of intravenously administered bacteriophage therapy has received FDA approval .
Getting phage therapy to a patient can be a bit a puzzle. These viruses are picky about the microbes they feast on, so you often need to take a swab of the patient’s bacteria, nurture it in a dish, and then test which phages are able to kill it off.
Bacteriophages , or ” phages ” for short, are viruses that specifically infect bacteria. Phages and other viruses are not considered living organisms because they can’t carry out biological processes without the help and cellular machinery of another organism.
Working together as a phage cocktail, lytic phages can target and destroy superbugs . When the bacteria begin to resist the phages , biologists can genetically modify the phages to better attack the bacteria. The phages can even work in concert with antibiotics, applying evolutionary pressure from both sides.
Bacteriophage , also called phage or bacterial virus , any of a group of viruses that infect bacteria. Bacteriophages were discovered independently by Frederick W. Twort in Great Britain (1915) and Félix d’Hérelle in France (1917).
HIV, Hepatitis C, and Ebola have given viruses a bad name, but microscopic phages are the good guys of the virology world. Each phage specializes in overtaking certain strains of bacteria—for example, staph, strep, and E. coli—which they attack and use as a host to multiply.
Two years later, Felix d’Herelle , a microbiologist at the Institut Pasteur in Paris, picked up where Twort left off and first proposed phages as a therapy for human infections.
Phages won’t harm any of your cells except for the bacterial cells that they’re meant to kill. Phage therapy has fewer side effects than antibiotics . On the other hand, most antibiotics have a much wider host range. Some antibiotics can kill a wide range of bacterial species at the same time.
Bacteria can resist phage attack through different mechanisms, including spontaneous mutations, restriction modification systems, and adaptive immunity via the CRISPR-Cas system . Spontaneous mutations are the main mechanisms driving both phage resistance and phage – bacterial coevolution .