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Infectious disease

Skin and skin structure infection (SSSI)

Staphylococcus accessory gene regulator A (agrA)

In vitro and mouse studies suggest a small molecule inhibitor of Staphylococcus transcription could help treat bacterial skin infections. In cultured, pathogenic S. aureus, a small molecule agrA inhibitor blocked quorum sensing of the pathogenic bacteria without altering quorum sensing of the commensal skin bacteria S. epidermidis. In two mouse models of skin infection caused by Gram-positive bacteria, the small molecule agrA inhibitor given during bacterial challenge or after abscess development prevented tissue damage and increased bacterial clearance compared with vehicle control. Next steps could include testing the inhibitor in additional models of bacterial skin infection.

SciBX 7(28); doi:10.1038/scibx.2014.831
Published online July 24, 2014

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Sully, E.K. et al. PLoS Pathog.; published online June 12, 2014;
Contact: Pamela R. Hall, The University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, N.M.