Israel develops stronger enzyme to curb antibiotic overuse in fruits-Xinhua

Israel develops stronger enzyme to curb antibiotic overuse in fruits

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2022-03-22 00:37:14

JERUSALEM, March 21 (Xinhua) -- Israeli researchers have found a potential treatment against fireblight, a common contagious disease affecting apples, pears and other fruits, using a bio-engineered enzyme.

The enzyme could also inhibit the blue mold disease in apples caused by the fungus Penicillium expansum, Livnat Afriat-Jurnou, a researcher at Israel's Migal Galilee Research Institute who led the study, told Xinhua.

The researchers found the enzyme, AHL lactonase, can disrupt the pathogenic bacterium but is vulnerable to temperature changes, said the study published in January 2021 in the peer-reviewed journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces.

They then applied a protein engineering technique called "direct evolution" to boost the enzyme's resistance to temperature and enclosed the enzyme in nanocapsules to make it even more stable under various conditions.

The two-step process thus improved the thermal resistance and shelf life of the enzyme, increasing its potential in future development as an antibacterial treatment, concluded the article.

Once developed, the enzyme treatment can reduce the use of antibiotics, to which bacteria have developed resistance over the years, according to Afriat-Jurnou.