Marie Curie Individual Fellowship (2019-2022) 

Bacteria can invade immune cells or form biofilms and cause persistent infections. Such infections are difficult to treat because of the poor drug penetration. To overcome this, current studies indicate that liposomes can deliver antibiotics with better activity. However, liposomal products have low drug concentrations, poor drug retention, and rapid release. Therefore, a hybrid system comprising a DNA nanogel trapped within a liposome was developed for antibiotic delivery to address this problem.

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 Research & Innovation programme under grant agreement No. 834811

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On wound surfaces, bacteria can form large numbers of slimy glue-like membranes that stick on the wound and slow down the healing process. These slimy communities of bacteria, termed biofilms, account for at least two-thirds of all clinical infections and are especially difficult to treat. Because many antimicrobials used in clinical practice have poor biofilm penetration, biofilms are up to 1000 times more resistant to antibiotics. Consequently, more than two-thirds of antibiotics are ineffective. This enhances the risk of developing resistant infections. There is therefore an urgent need to improve biofilm penetration and enhance the activity of antimicrobials.
The main goal of this TFS project is to generate non-toxic antimicrobials with improved activity against biofilms and faster wound healing as innovative medicines for the treatment of biofilm wound infections. The results of this study will also aid the development of new tools to combat antimicrobial resistance.