A National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow and Microbiology doctoral candidate, Matthew Powers is working to identify new treatments for the antibiotic resistant Gram-negative bacteria Acinetobacter baumannii.
Unlike single-membrane Gram-positive bacteria which are susceptible to antibiotics, double-membraned Gram-negative bacteria are unaffected by many treatments due to the impermeability of the second, outer membrane.
“The cell membrane is a critical barrier for cells to protect themselves from the environment, including toxic compounds,” Powers explains.
“If [a drug] can’t get to its target inside the bacterial cell, it is useless.”
Gram-negative bacteria are found in virtually all environments on Earth that support … read more