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Molecules 2015, 20(4), 6466-6487; doi:10.3390/molecules20046466

Recycling Antibiotics into GUMBOS: A New Combination Strategy to Combat Multi-Drug-Resistant Bacteria

1
Commodity Utilization, Southern Regional Research Center, Agricultural Research Services, United States Department of Agriculture, New Orleans, LA 70124, USA
2
Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Parasitology, Louisiana State University Medical Center, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
3
Department of Chemistry, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Peter J. Rutledge
Received: 28 January 2015 / Revised: 28 March 2015 / Accepted: 2 April 2015 / Published: 10 April 2015
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Abstract

The emergence of multi-drug-resistant bacteria, coupled with the lack of new antibiotics in development, is fast evolving into a global crisis. New strategies utilizing existing antibacterial agents are urgently needed. We propose one such strategy in which four outmoded β-lactam antibiotics (ampicillin, carbenicillin, cephalothin and oxacillin) and a well-known antiseptic (chlorhexidine di-acetate) were fashioned into a group of uniform materials based on organic salts (GUMBOS) as an alternative to conventional combination drug dosing strategies. The antibacterial activity of precursor ions (e.g., chlorhexidine diacetate and β-lactam antibiotics), GUMBOS and their unreacted mixtures were studied with 25 clinical isolates with varying antibiotic resistance using a micro-broth dilution method. Acute cytotoxicity and therapeutic indices were determined using fibroblasts, endothelial and cervical cell lines. Intestinal permeability was predicted using a parallel artificial membrane permeability assay. GUMBOS formed from ineffective β-lactam antibiotics and cytotoxic chlorhexidine diacetate exhibited unique pharmacological properties and profound antibacterial activity at lower concentrations than the unreacted mixture of precursor ions at equivalent stoichiometry. Reduced cytotoxicity to invasive cell types commonly found in superficial and chronic wounds was also observed using GUMBOS. GUMBOS show promise as an alternative combination drug strategy for treating wound infections caused by drug-resistant bacteria. View Full-Text
Keywords: chlorhexidine; β-lactam antibiotic; multi-drug resistant; GUMBOS; combination drug therapy; ion pair; antibacterial; synergy chlorhexidine; β-lactam antibiotic; multi-drug resistant; GUMBOS; combination drug therapy; ion pair; antibacterial; synergy
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Cole, M.R.; Hobden, J.A.; Warner, I.M. Recycling Antibiotics into GUMBOS: A New Combination Strategy to Combat Multi-Drug-Resistant Bacteria. Molecules 2015, 20, 6466-6487.

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