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Achilles' heel of pathogenic bacteria discovered

Multidrug-resistant bacteria remain a major concern for hospitals and nursing homes worldwide. Propagation of bacterial resistance is alarming and makes the search for new antimicrobials increasingly urgent. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen have now identified a potential new target to fight bacteria: the factor EF-P. EF-P plays a crucial role in the production of proteins that are essential for the virulence of EHEC or salmonellae. The researchers' findings suggest that drugs blocking EF-P would impair the fitness of pathogenic bacteria and might lead to a new generation of specific antibiotics that allow to combat infections caused by drug-resistant pathogens.

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