Nanoparticles boost antibacterial treatments

The University of Liverpool and IOTA NanoSolutions have developed man-made nanoparticles that could increase the effectiveness of antibacterial treatments. Many current drugs are insoluble and need to be administered at higher doses in order to work. However, this increases the chances that bacteria and other organisms will build up a resistance to the drugs. In time, new formulations of medicines must be developed in order to knock out the mutated organisms.

University of Liverpool researchers found that in some instances, the nanoparticles can be used to make insoluble drugs behave like soluble drugs, increasing their effectiveness at lower doses. Scientists are concentrating on applying the nanoparticle technology to antiparasitic drugs that treat malaria.

"Already our technology has shown the potential to improve a range of current medicines and may lead to treatments that prevent drug resistance," said Professor Steve Rannard, from the Department of Chemistry, who is also co-founder and current Chief Scientific Officer of IOTA NanoSolutions. "If our approach can deliver new antimalarial treatments, it may help to prevent millions of deaths per year and improve the lives of hundreds of millions of current malaria sufferers."

- see this release for more