Fatty acid explored for clues to create antibiotics

03/8/2009 | Washington Post, The

Researchers found that a fatty acid known as cis-2-decenoic acid serves as a chemical signal that tells bacteria to break from a biofilm into their individual "planktonic states." Bacteria in a tightly clumped biofilm are more difficult to combat using antibiotics. The study's lead author thinks CDA can be used to develop biofilm-destroying antibiotics because the molecule does not kill bacteria and therefore should not induce drug resistance in the bacteria.

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