An innovative treatment for diverting water in an infected person could help treat a crippling disease that has left millions of people stranded on their feet.
Dr Giorgio Giannini and colleagues from the University of Florence, have developed a novel, cheap, and effective way to treat the disease.
The team’s findings are published in the journal Scientific Reports.
The disease has infected at least 20 million people worldwide.
Dr Giannantonio Giannino, lead author of the paper and a clinical associate professor in the Department of Clinical Pharmacology at the University’s University Hospital, explains the idea behind their treatment.
“The main thing is to get the water into the circulation, and then to change the circulation in order to get it back into the lungs.
If you change the flow, you can change the disease.”
Dr Gianantonio explained that the treatment has two key components.
Firstly, the medication was injected into the skin directly, without having to be taken directly from the patient.
Secondly, the drug was applied to the surface of the patient’s feet using a special adhesive that could not be removed.
The drug was first developed in 2011 and it was originally designed to treat diverticula, a bacterial infection caused by bacteria living in the bloodstream.
It has become a mainstay of the treatment for severe diverticular diverticulations.
“Diverticula is a disease that affects more than 2 million people and kills up to 20,000,” Dr Giannanto explained.
“It affects the entire body.
It can affect the heart, lungs, liver, and kidneys.”
Diverting water is the biggest problem for the disease, but its main cause is a type of algae called phytoplankton.
It can then cause a condition known as diverticulum, which is when the body’s water gets stuck in the pores of the body.
“We have the hope that by taking the water and changing the circulation we can remove the algae,” Dr Giannucci explained.
The first part of the solution was a drug called Stye.
The drug works by blocking a protein called the stye-1 enzyme.
“By blocking the sty-1 enzymes, we can reduce the amount of water that enters the lung and the blood, which in turn reduces the flow to the lungs and the body, and therefore the disease,” Dr Gabriele Giannina explained.
Dr Giovanino explained that it was difficult to find the right drug for the styre-1 inhibitor to be effective because it was not known which specific enzyme was involved in the disease process.
“Stye-2 was developed, but it has some side effects.
For instance, the side effects are very severe and they lead to a lot of complications,” Dr Giovanini explained.
Diverticular diverticuli, which affect between 20 and 50 million people, are caused by an infection of the diverticulo-punctual ligament, or the punctured end of the style of the end of one of the long, flexible ligaments on the front of the foot called the pedal bone.
“In diverticulas, there is no vascular access, so the only way the body can remove this infection is by diverting the water in the blood,” Dr Giovannino explained.
Stye is a compound that is very effective at blocking the enzymes involved in stye formation.
“As soon as the styer-1 protein was inhibited, the disease did not occur,” Dr Luigi Giannani explained.
“So the problem is that the styses have to be inhibited by the enzyme.
And then you have to inhibit the enzyme itself.”
In order to do that, the researchers have used a new drug that can be extracted from a bacterium called Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
The bacterium, which has been found to be active in the treatment of diverticulate diverticulus, is found in the soil.
“Because the bacterium has been isolated, we have a good idea of what the enzymes in the bacteriophage are,” Dr Gigante explained.
Using a gene from the bacterioid, the team has been able to synthesise Stye-A.
“To make the new compound we have to use a new gene from Saccharoms cerevisae.
And, so far, we are in the process of testing our compound in our laboratory,” Dr Alessandro Giovanani explained, adding that Stye A is now available for testing.
The next step is to create the drug in the lab and then test it in people with diverticuosa, the most common type of diverting diverticulation.
“Once we find out how to make Stye, we will be able to test it on people,” Dr Giovanni said.
Dr Giovannini said that his team is now working on producing