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      Drug Design, Development and Therapy (submit here)

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      Is Open Access

      Bacteriophage-based therapy in cystic fibrosis-associated Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections: rationale and current status


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          Pulmonary infections involving Pseudomonas aeruginosa are among the leading causes of the deterioration of the respiratory status of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. The emergence of multidrug-resistant strains in such populations, favored by iterative antibiotic cures, has led to the urgent need for new therapies. Among them, bacteriophage-based therapies deserve a focus. One century of empiric use in the ex-USSR countries suggests that bacteriophages may have beneficial effects against a large range of bacterial infections. Interest in bacteriophages has recently renewed in Western countries, and the in vitro data available suggest that bacteriophage-based therapy may be of significant interest for the treatment of pulmonary infections in CF patients. Although the clinical data concerning this specific population are relatively scarce, the beginning of the first large randomized study evaluating bacteriophage-based therapy in burn infections suggests that the time has come to assess the effectiveness of this new therapy in CF P. aeruginosa pneumonia. Consequently, the aim of this review is, after a brief history, to summarize the evidence concerning bacteriophage efficacy against P. aeruginosa and, more specifically, the in vitro studies, animal models, and clinical trials targeting CF.

          Most cited references58

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          Persister cells, dormancy and infectious disease.

          Kim Lewis (2007)
          Several well-recognized puzzles in microbiology have remained unsolved for decades. These include latent bacterial infections, unculturable microorganisms, persister cells and biofilm multidrug tolerance. Accumulating evidence suggests that these seemingly disparate phenomena result from the ability of bacteria to enter into a dormant (non-dividing) state. The molecular mechanisms that underlie the formation of dormant persister cells are now being unravelled and are the focus of this Review.
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            A controlled clinical trial of a therapeutic bacteriophage preparation in chronic otitis due to antibiotic-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa; a preliminary report of efficacy.

            To evaluate the efficacy and safety of a therapeutic bacteriophage preparation (Biophage-PA) targeting antibiotic-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa in chronic otitis. Randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled Phase I/II clinical trial approved by UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and the Central Office for Research Ethics Committees (COREC) ethical review process. A single specialist university hospital. 24 patients with chronic otitis with a duration of several years (2-58). Each patient had, at the time of entry to the trial, an ear infection because of an antibiotic-resistant P. aeruginosa strain sensitive to one or more of the six phages present in Biophage-PA. Participants were randomised in two groups of 12 treated with either a single dose of Biophage-PA or placebo and followed up at 7, 21 and 42 days after treatment by the same otologist. Ears were thoroughly cleaned on each occasion and clinical and microbiological indicators measured. Physician assessed erythema/inflammation, ulceration/granulation/polyps, discharge quantity, discharge type and odour using a Visual Analogue Scale (VAS). Patients reported discomfort, itchiness, wetness and smell also using a VAS. Bacterial levels of P. aeruginosa and phage counts from swabs were measured initially and at follow-up. At each visit patients were asked about side effects using a structured form. Digital otoscopic images were obtained on days 0 and 42 for illustrative purposes only. Relative to day 0, pooled patient- and physician-reported clinical indicators improved for the phage treated group relative to the placebo group. Variation from baseline levels was statistically significant for combined data from all clinic days only for the phage treated group. Variation from baseline levels was statistically significant for the majority of the patient assessed clinical indicators only for the phage treated group. P. aeruginosa counts were significantly lower only in the phage treated group. No treatment related adverse event was reported. The first controlled clinical trial of a therapeutic bacteriophage preparation showed efficacy and safety in chronic otitis because of chemo-resistant P. aeruginosa.
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              Biofilms and device-associated infections.

              Microorganisms commonly attach to living and nonliving surfaces, including those of indwelling medical devices, and form biofilms made up of extracellular polymers. In this state, microorganisms are highly resistant to antimicrobial treatment and are tenaciously bound to the surface. To better understand and control biofilms on indwelling medical devices, researchers should develop reliable sampling and measurement techniques, investigate the role of biofilms in antimicrobial drug resistance, and establish the link between biofilm contamination and patient infection.

                Author and article information

                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Dove Medical Press
                16 July 2015
                : 9
                : 3653-3663
                [1 ]Institut Hospitalo-Universitaire Méditerranée Infection, URMITE CNRS IRD INSERM UMR 7278, Marseille, France
                [2 ]Réanimation Médicale – Détresses Respiratoires et Infections Sévères, APHM, CHU Nord, Marseille, France
                [3 ]Service d’Explorations Fonctionnelles Respiratoires, APHM, CHU Nord, Marseille, France
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Jean-Marc Rolain, IHU Méditerranée Infection, URMITE CNRS IRD INSERM UMR 7278, 27 Bd J Moulin, 13385 Marseille Cedex 05, France, Tel +33 4 86 13 68 28, Email jean-marc.rolain@ 123456univ-amu.fr
                © 2015 Hraiech et al. This work is published by Dove Medical Press Limited, and licensed under Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License

                The full terms of the License are available at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.


                Pharmacology & Pharmaceutical medicine
                pneumonia,pulmonary infection,bacterial infection,multidrug resistance


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