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Superbug Strain Found in Houston Still Susceptible to Some Antibiotics

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New research has recently revealed that Houston, Texas, is a hub for a bacteria which is resistant to many commonly used antibiotics. Klebsiella pneumoniae, or a “superbug” as it’s being referred to, has been found to be prevalent in the city, which is taking scientists by surprise. In a news release, Dr. James Musser, chair of pathology and genomic medicine at Houston Methodist Hospital and senior author of the study, identified, “Finding the otherwise uncommon strain in our city was a very surprising discovery. We urgently need to identify potential vaccine targets or other new treatments, and develop new and rapid diagnostic techniques.”

Superbug Strain Found in Houston Still Susceptible to Some Antibiotics

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A bacteria which can normally be found in human intestines without causing issue, K. pneumoniae found in other parts of the body or outside of it can cause serious infections. Hospitalized patients are of note to be at a particularly high risk, as the strain has been known to trigger pneumonia, meningitis, and bloodstream or urinary tract infections, among others. Still susceptible to some antibiotics, this particular strain has also been identified at points in South America, Europe, Asia, and Africa, but it’s yet unclear as to why it’s gained a foothold in the Houston area.

Superbug Strain Found in Houston Still Susceptible to Some Antibiotics

Photo: Wikipedia

“Incorporating sophisticated and novel computational and molecular strategies allowed us to rapidly identify the drug-resistant strains,” said Dr. S. Wesley Long, the study’s first author and associate director of the Clinical Microbiology Laboratory at Houston Methodist Hospital. “The faster we can successfully identify which antibiotics this strain is sensitive to, the faster a treating physician can target the appropriate therapy to these ill patients.” The tests will also assist researchers to determine how the germ is able to spread throughout the Houston area.

Source:

MSN

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