"Bacterial resistance to antibiotics is one of medicine's most vexing challenges. Most antibiotics initially work really well, killing more than 99.9% of microbes they target. But through mutation and the selection pressure exerted by the antibiotic, a few inevitably manage to survive, and flourish as antibiotic-resistant strains. Hence, new strategies to design antibiotic to combat drug-resistant bacteria are required. Many drug delivery systems based on nanomaterials have been developed during the last decade, being the toxicology of these materials into single bacteria still not thoroughly evaluated due to the lack of reliable techniques to confine individual microbes. Prof. Whitesides' group in Harvard University (USA) is undoubtedly a world leader in this area, as it has a high international profile earned through many key contributions about novel nanofabrication methods for microbiological applications during the last 20 years. Prof. Miranda and Prof. Carrascosa (both from IMDEA Nanoscience-Spain) are the leaders of research groups working in collaboration for (i) the development of novel antibiotic strategies based on drug delivery nano-systems and (ii) biophysical aspects of cell mechanics, self-assembly properties of organic heterostructures and supramolecular nanomachines. The time is ripe to integrate the various strategies developed by Prof. Whitesides’ group to confine single living bacteria with the novel strategies for drug delivery that are being developed at IMDEA Nanoscience-Spain.
The aim of the present OIF includes consolidating IMDEA expertise in the toxicological effect of nanoparticle based drug carriers into individual bacteria in order to develop a novel set of antibiotics for treatment of multi drug-resistant bacteria and to contribute to fundamental questions about bacterial biology, such as cell wall biophysics, chemical bonding and DNA conformational dynamics."
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