Industry News: Mashed Up Cockroach Brains Kill E.coli

Cockroaches appear to carry a secret weapon that can protect people against deadly superbugs, new research has found.  Dr. Naveed Khan and his team tested mashed up cockroach brains against the E.coli bacteria that cause meningitis and MRSA, the staph bacteria that has become resistant to antibiotics.

A night in a Petri dish together killed 90 percent of the bacteria, Khan told the (Toronto) Star.  The insect parts had no effect on human cells, however.  “Some of these insects live in the filthiest places known to man,” he said.  Because cockroaches can survive the loss of a limb, and the brains of cockroaches are the most protected parts of their bodies, researchers decided to look there for their answers.

Tests also examined the nervous systems of locusts for superbug fighting power, after realizing locusts were unscathed while soldiers fighting in countries such as Afghanistan were becoming infected with bacteria that resisted treatment.  “What’s exciting is that most research has generally been done on plants,” said Khan.  A professor of molecular microbiology at the Univeristy of  Nottingham in England, Khan has returned to his native Pakistan to help with the health disaster that followed devasting floods in the country earlier this year…

Reprinted from Source: PEST CONTROL TECHNOLGY MAGAZINE, November 2010

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