HOME ABOUT CONTACT AVAILABLE ISSUES SUBSCRIBE MEDIA & ADS CONFERENCE CALENDAR
LATEST UPDATES » Vol 21, No 05, May 2017 – Insights Into the Brain & microRNAs       » Omega-3 Therapy May Help Reverse Type 1 Diabetes       » The Potential of Saving Human Lives with Hibernation       » Scientists Unlock TCM Drug's Role in Weight Loss       » Medical Reforms in Beijing       » Fruits and Vegetables' Latest Superpower? Lowering Blood Pressure      
BIOBOARD - US
3D Printed Structures Reveal Bacterial ‘Chit-Chat’

Researchers from the University of Texas have developed a microscopic 3D printing strategy to study communication between different species of bacteria.

It has long been known that bacteria communicate with each other by releasing and absorbing chemicals in their surroundings – but these chemical signals travel only very small distances, which has made studying them on traditional 2D plates challenging.

The researchers used a laser-based technique to build containers in gelatin for bacteria in almost any 3D shape.

Gelatin, a very porous material, allows chemicals to pass freely between the containers.

“We believe this development will become a valuable tool in understanding behavioral complexity in polymicrobial infections, such as those that can take root in chronic wounds,” the paper’s lead author and professor of chemistry Jason Shear said.

“How arrangement may influence the virulence of populations within such communities is of fundamental scientific interest, and insights that may derive from systematic studies has the potential to inform therapeutic strategies.”

Mark Blaskovich, a senior research officer at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland, also noted the method provides a very good way of studying how bacteria interact chemically.

“In the real world, bacteria grow under a wide range of conditions,” he said.

“They are often found in small spaces surrounded by tissue and cells, and in the presence of other bacteria. Simulating this in the laboratory is very difficult, which is why our understanding of how bacteria communicate with each other or behave in different environments is very limited.”

Dr Blaskovich was concerned that the new technique will not be widely available for research. He notes that it requires highly specialised equipment, too expensive for most labs.

“The authors of the publication have already shown that small populations of one type of drug-resistant bacteria can directly influence a non-resistant strain – not by passing on genes for antibiotic resistance, but by chewing up the antibiotic before it reaches the other bug,” Dr Blaskovich said.

Communication between bacteria also controls how virulent an infection turns out to be. Understanding how bacteria talk to each other will help patients with many diseases, like cystic fibrosis.

Andrea O'Connor, associate professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at the University of Melbourne, said a wide range of 3D printing techniques are currently being investigated, enabling the printing of biomaterials including polymers, hydrogels, ceramics and metals.

“3D printing technologies have many potential applications in biomedical research and in development of medical devices, biosensors, drug delivery systems and even in repair and regeneration of tissues and organs,” she said.

“Recently researchers have also developed methods to print biological cells and cell aggregates in 3D arrangements like sheets and hollow tubes. The work reported in this paper takes an alternative approach – instead of printing the cells themselves, the authors suspended the cells in a gel and then used a laser beam to crosslink or set regions of the gel surrounding selected bacterial cells.”

Simona John von Freyend
Source: The Conversation

Click here for the complete issue.

NEWS CRUNCH  
news Healthcare Sustainability in Asia: Now is the Time to Act — FT Asia Healthcare & Life Sciences Summit 2017
news Philip Morris International and British American Tobacco receive award from PETA science group for AOP developments
news 6th Asia-Pacific Breast Cancer Summit to take place in Hong Kong
PR NEWSWIRE  
Asia Pacific Biotech News
EDITORS' CHOICE  

Lady Ganga: Nilza'S Story
COLUMNS  
Subscribe to APBN E-Newsletter
Find us under 'Others' option to receive APBN e-newsletters thrice a month!

APBN Editorial Calendar 2017
January:
Healthcare Focus: LUNGS
February:
War on CANCER
March:
Get to Know TCM
April:
Diabetes: The Big Picture
May:
The Piece of Your Mind - Brain Health/Science
June:
Rare Diseases
July:
Food Science & Technology
August:
Eye Care/ Eye Health
September:
No. 1 Killer - Heart Diseases, Diagnosis and Treatment
October:
Skin Diseases/Allergic Reactions
November:
Diseases threatening our Children
December:
Liver Health & Treatment/Technology
Editorial calendar is subjected to changes.
– Editor: Carmen, Jia Wen Loh
MAGAZINE TAGS
About Us
Events
Available issues
Editorial Board
Letters to Editor
Instructions to Authors
Advertise with Us
CONTACT
World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd.
5 Toh Tuck Link, Singapore 596224
Tel: 65-6466-5775
Fax: 65-6467-7667
» For Editorial Enquiries:
   biotech_edit@wspc.com or Ms Carmen
» For Subscriptions, Advertisements &
   Media Partnerships Enquiries:
   biotech_ad@wspc.com
Copyright© 2017 World Scientific Publishing Co Pte Ltd  •  Privacy Policy