This time I want to tell you about a new method of administration of antibiotics. Cefepime is an antibiotic used to treat serious infections.
However, it is so unstable that it must be administered very successively. Nanospheres seem to be the solution to avoid this rapid degradation and all the side effects derived from it … KEEP READING!
First of all, remember, for those with worse memory, that antibiotics are drugs that attack bacteria. They are useless, no matter how much a doctor tries to prescribe them “just in case”, or without being clear about what happens to us.
Then there are the very dangerous resistant bacteria and people begin to die from not having effective antibiotics (let’s begin to value more the opinion of scientists and researchers, who usually know what they are talking about). But that is another topic and I already told you about it in another post: https://www.mariairanzobiotec.com/super-bacterias-llegan-quedarse/
Let’s keep going. This attack of the antibiotic can cause the stop of the bacterial growth (bacteriostatic antibiotics), or its death (bactericidal antibiotics). In turn, there are different types of antibiotics directed against a part or a vital process of the bacteria. However, today we are going to focus on a very specific one, cefepime.
Cefepime, technically speaking, is a cephalosporin, a group of beta-lactam antibiotics. In simple language: a group of antibiotics that prevents bacteria from synthesizing their cell wall, a necessary part for them to live.
This antibiotic is often used to treat serious bacterial infections that affect the urinary system, kidney, skin, and even pneumonia.
What is the problem with this antibiotic?
That it is very little stable in our organism and decomposes quickly. This means that it has to be administered very often intravenously, and therefore, in a hospital. In turn, this successive administration causes a brutal number of side effects: nausea, epilepsy, neurological problems and kidney dysfunction.
Now we understand why we wanted to find a way to make the antibiotic more stable in our body. The good news is that a group of researchers, from the Department of Physical Chemistry of the University of Seville (US) in collaboration with the University of Huelva and the Hospital Pharmacy Service of the Virgen Macarena University Hospital, have found it. The solution is to use nanospheres.
Nanospheres are nanometric vesicles. To give you an idea of its size: a centimeter has 10 million nanometers. This time they are lipid nanospheres or liposomes, that is, their envelope consists of lipids arranged side by side.
This composition is the same as the plasma membrane of our cells. This detail makes them biocompatible with us and does not cause any type of rejection. At the same time, its interior is aqueous, allowing the antibiotic molecules to be introduced.
With this encapsulation, the drug is made more stable in our blood, and therefore, is able to reach the organs where its action is needed before breaking down, be more effective, and thus reduce the frequency of its administration. In addition, this encapsulation allows the drug to be released in a controlled way, and has been shown to penetrate cells perfectly.
How has it been found that the antibiotic continues to work after being encapsulated? Using a culture of E. coli bacteria, researchers have shown that the encapsulated drug is just as effective as its free form in killing bacteria.
For the moment?
Trust that the clinical trials of this new discovery will prosper, and this new way of administering cefepime will be a reality for patients who need it. Furthermore, this method may also be applicable to other antibiotics or drugs. At the moment, we can only wait.