A recent study published in the journal of Microbiology has shown that bacteria that adhere to chronic wounds are deadly to the maggots used as treat lesions.
Researchers based at thw Wound Healing Centre, Statens Serum Institute and the University of Copenhagen in Denmark found out through their study that maggots which were applied to wounds which were heavily infected with Pseudomonas aeruginosa were found dead, after a period of 20 hours.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a bacterium that infects chronic wounds by clumping together to form biofilms. The cells are the bacteria within the biofilms are interconnected with each other through a communication system known as quorum sensing (QS).
Research found that the act of clumping together and forming biofilms make the bacteria more able to evade the actions of antibiotics as well as the immune system of the host.
The lead researcher, Dr Andersen elaborated that when QS signaling pathways were blocked, the maggots were observed to be better able to stay alive and clean the wounds.
The signaling pathways through biofilms were crucial for the bacteria to produce lethal toxins that were responsible in reducing the effectiveness of wound-treating maggots.
Presently, researchers are still trying to find out the exact bacterial pathway that is responsible in destroying the maggots. With better understanding of the specific key pathway, new treatments can be developed to address the issue directly.
For instance, an agent that effectively disrupts Pseudomonas aeruginosa signaling processes can be developed so that there would be an increase the success level of maggot therapy and wound healing.