The use of bacteriophages to combat bacterial infections, has garnered attention as a potent strategy in the battle against multi-drugs-resistant infections.
This century-old practice has experienced a resurgence due to the declining efficacy of antibiotics, sparking renewed scientific interest in the field. Unlike antibiotics, phages target specific bacterial strains, making them a promising alternative or complement to traditional antibiotic treatments.
Conventional phage therapy hinges on harnessing natural phages to infiltrate and rupture bacterial cells. Phages are natural viruses that infect bacteria. They attach themselves to bacterial cells and inject their genetic material, leading to rapid cell death.
By hijacking the bacterium’s metabolism, phages force it to produce more phages, which are released upon bacterial cell lysis. This exponential multiplication eventually decimates the majority of the infecting bacteria. The immune system then steps in to eliminate any remaining bacteria, completing the healing process.
One critical aspect of phage therapy is selecting the right phages to match the infection being treated. Phages exhibit high specificity, making the selection process crucial. Phages exhibit remarkable specificity in targeting particular bacterial strains, making it imperative to carefully select them to match the specific infection being treated. Presently, the manual methods employed for this selection are time-consuming and laborious.
To address this challenge, Vésale Bioscience has developed an automated phagogram, an analytical tool designed to swiftly identify and recommend the most suitable phages from a vast collection, tailored to combat a specific infectious bacterium. While laboratory-based selection processes can take up to a week, the automatic phagogram accomplishes this task in just a few hours.
The phagogram proceeds to identify the most suitable phages for the patient, taking into account clinical indications and other objective criteria, before proposing the viral cocktail to be administered.