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Antibiotic compounds from Insects

October 15, 2013

An increasing number of antibiotics is proving less effective and developing new drugs is not lucrative for the pharmaceuticals industry.

Image: Didier Descouens / CC BY-SA 3.0

Now there's help from a relatively young scientific discipline that marries entomology and biotechnology. Many bugs are masters at adaptation and survival and they boast an incredibly robust immune system. Scientists from Giessen are searching for molecules and proteins with which insects successfully fight off bacteria and fungi. They've isolated a molecule from the multicolored Asian lady beetle which could work against tuberculosis and malaria. And even the honeycomb moth produces molecules that can combat disease-causing pathogens.

Bugs to the rescue -- antibiotic compounds from insects