Research uncovers potential preventive for central line infection

A team of researchers at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center has developed an antibody that could prevent Candida infections that often afflict hospitalized patients who receive central lines.

Margaret Hostetter, MD, director of infectious diseases at Cincinnati Children's, and her team developed the antibody, which prevents Candida albicans from binding to heparin, thereby stopping the formation of in a rat model of catheter-associated infection. A biofilm is a multi-layered buildup of millions of microorganisms that coat the inside of the catheter

The study was published online in July in the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

Earlier research by Hostetter's team showed that heparin binds to Candida albicans, a yeast that resides on our skin and in our . Candida uses its ability to bind heparin to elude the body's immune response and to form biofilms. When biofilms form on the inside of catheters, groups of microorganisms can break off into the bloodstream and cause serious infections.

"Standard anticoagulants used in catheters may facilitate biofilm formation by microbes," says Dr. Hostetter. "Understanding this process can lead to new strategies for prevention of line infections."

In hospitalized patients with , Candida albicans may gain entrance to the body and form a biofilm in a central venous catheter. When a biofilm disperses, the yeast will enter the bloodstream and may be carried to other organs, such as the kidneys, the liver, or the spleen.

When the antibody is modified to be compatible with humans, clinical trials of the treatment can begin in humans, says Dr. Hostetter.

Collaborators on the study included researchers from Duke University Medical Center, the University of Cincinnati and the University of Wisconsin.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Fighting fungal infections with bacteria

May 01, 2010

A bacterial pathogen can communicate with yeast to block the development of drug-resistant yeast infections, say Irish scientists writing in the May issue of Microbiology. The research could be a step toward ...

Research identifies how mouth cells resist Candida infection

Sep 02, 2013

Candida albicans is a common fungus found living in, and on, many parts of the human body. Usually this species causes no harm to humans unless it can breach the body's immune defences, where can lead to serious illness or dea ...

New compound prevents first steps of fungal infection

Aug 13, 2013

Targeting serious and sometimes deadly fungal infections, a team of researchers at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) has discovered a chemical ...

Recommended for you

Obama addresses West Africans on facts about Ebola

7 hours ago

President Barack Obama urged West Africans on Tuesday to wear gloves and masks when caring for Ebola patients or burying anyone who died of the disease. He also discouraged the traditional burial practice ...

Gluten-free diet benefits asymptomatic EmA+ adults

7 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Asymptomatic individuals with endomysial antibodies (EmA) benefit from a gluten-free diet (GFD), according to a study published in the September issue of Gastroenterology.

Another US health worker infected with Ebola

7 hours ago

A third American health worker has tested positive for the Ebola virus while working with patients in West Africa, the Christian missionary group SIM said Tuesday.

UN implores all countries to help on Ebola

9 hours ago

The international group Doctor Without Borders warned Tuesday that the world is 'losing the battle' against Ebola, while U.N. officials implored all countries to quickly step up their response by contributing health experts ...

Travel restrictions could worsen Ebola crisis: experts

14 hours ago

Travel restrictions could worsen West Africa's Ebola epidemic, limiting medical and food supplies and keeping out much-needed doctors, virologists said Tuesday as the disease continued its deadly spread.

User comments