Team:Elan Vital Korea/Project Overview
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria pose a serious problem for global medical community. Detecting antibiotic resistance as quickly as possible is crucial for determination of the correct treatment for patients and for setting up quarantines to prevent spreading. We hypothesized that it is possible to use quorum sensing (QS) to devise a rapid way for cells to report the existence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Here, we developed a reporter cell that expresses GFP in the presence of the QS signaling molecule acyl homoserine lactone (AHL). Our test cells (which act as a simulation of antibiotic-resistant bacteria) express lactonase, which breaks down AHL. In our experimental system, test cells should signify their presence by breaking down AHL and preventing GFP expression in reporter cells. Therefore, our project serves as a proof of principle and we hope that our work will serve as a basis for developing similar, more sophisticated quorum sensing-based detection systems for antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the future.