Why testing combinations of antimicrobial agents?
The growing number of multidrug-resistant (MDR) strains, as well as pathogens that are resistant to all current therapeutic options, emerging in healthcare settings and in the general community urge for the development of novel antimicrobial therapies. The inability of current antibiotics to respond to such resistance has led researchers to search for agents with alternative modes of action, such as antimicrobial peptides (AMP), and to propose new antimicrobial regimens based on the combination of older antimicrobials and new or revisited compounds, such as natural products. (Biofouling – Jorge, P. et al.)
Antimicrobials that were used in the past, such as the AMP colistin, have been recently resumed and used in association with carbapenems, tigecycline, or aminoglycosides, showing a positive impact on clinical outcomes (Bassetti and Righi, 2015).A wider understanding of the potential laying in the combination of antimicrobial agents requires systematic data reconstruction. Despite the availability of various data repositories on antimicrobial agents, a wealth of information remains hidden within the scientific literature.
Our database aims to bridge the gap between agent repositories and studies documenting the effect of antimicrobial combination therapies. Most notably, our primary aim is to compile data on the combination of antimicrobial agents, namely natural products such as AMP. To meet this purpose, we have developed a data curation workflow that combines text mining, manual expert curation and graph analysis and supports the reconstruction of AMP-Drug combinations.
The initial release of the database focused on antimicrobial combinations that have been experimentally tested againstPseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Listeria monocytogenes and Candida albicans, which are prominent pathogenic organisms and are well-known for their wide and growing resistance to conventional antimicrobials. Besides maintaining these data collections, we are extending literature screening to a wider collection of organisms.