Can phytochemicals in broccoli kill antibiotic-resistant pathogens?
Researchers from Ben-Gurion University in the Negev decided to go the other way and study a phytochemical derived from cruciferous vegetables like broccoli that can disrupt biofilms.
The phytochemical 3,3′-diindolylmethane (DIM) successfully disrupted the biofilm that protects two different pathogens including Acinetobacter baumannii and Pseudomonas aeruginosa– allows eradicating them 65% and 70% of the time respectively. Combined with antibiotics, that number rose to 94%.
Professor Ariel Kushmaro, Dr Karina Golberg and his team along with Professor Robert Marks, all members of the Avram Department of Biotechnology Engineering, and Stella Goldstein-Goren at BGU documented their findings. in a peer-reviewed journal Medicine recently.
In addition, when they inserted DIM into an infected wound, it significantly accelerated the healing process, the team found.
Professor Kushmaro said: “Our findings show promise for research directions other than known antibiotics.
The development and commercialization of this technology is currently underway at the startup LifeMatters.
Other researchers from Professor Kushmaro’s lab include: Bat-el Kagan, Sigalit Barzanizan, Dr Karin Yaniv and Dr Esti Kramarsky-Winter. They collaborated with researchers from Near Eastern University and Girne American University in Cyprus.
The research was supported by the National Institute of Biotechnology in the Negev and the Israeli Ministry of Science and Technology.
Professor Kushmaro is also a member of the Goldman Sonnenfeldt School of Sustainability and Climate Change, and the Ilse Katz Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology.