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February 25 2013

Could An Antibiotic From Human Sweat Fight Hospital Superbugs And TB?


An antibiotic created from human sweat might fight off hospital superbugs and deadly strains of tuberculosis, scientists reported in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The researchers, from Scotland, Germany, France and Spain explained that a protein found on human skin - Dermcidin - is activated in sweat (slightly acidic and salty environments) and kills harmful microbes by perforating their cell membranes.

Dermcidin is a natural protein, part of our natural defences, that is present on our skin when we sweat. The authors wrote that understanding how these natural defences work could help researchers design effective alternatives to conventional antibiotic medications.

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