试验性治疗瞄准耐药细菌

You probably have heard about the Trojan Horse. Tradition says the ancient Greeks used a large wooden horse to trick enemy forces and capture the city of Troy.
你可能听说过特洛伊木马。传说古希腊使用一匹大型木马来欺骗敌军,并占领了特洛伊城。

Now, researchers say a similar plan of attack could help doctors destroy bacterial infections that are resistant to antibiotic drugs.
现在,研究人员表示,类似的攻击方案可以帮助医生消灭耐抗生素的细菌感染。

Scientists say the decreasing effectiveness of antibiotics is among the most critical problems facing modern medicine. Drug-resistant bacteria have become increasingly difficult to defeat in recent years. Scientists use the term "superbug" when talking about such bacteria.
科学家表示,抗生素治疗效果持续下降是现代医学面临的最关键问题之一。近年来,耐药细菌越来越难对付。在谈到这类细菌时,科学家们用到了“超级细菌”这个术语。

Learning to trick superbugs
学习欺骗超级细菌

In the United States, researchers wondered if superbugs could be tricked into taking a molecule that looks like food but causes problems once inside them.
美国的研究人员想弄清楚是否可以欺骗超级细菌,让它吃下一种看上去像是食物的分子,但一旦吃进去就会引发问题。

The researchers are with the University of Washington's School of Medicine. They studied a superbug called Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which causes infections in wounds, the lungs and other body parts. It can be a problem in patients whose ability to fight infection is weakened by cancer or conditions such as AIDS.
这些研究人员来自华盛顿大学医学院。他们研究了一种名为绿脓杆菌的超级细菌,它会引发伤口、肺部以及身体其它部位感染。对于抗感染能力受到癌症或艾滋等疾病削弱的患者来说,这可能是个大问题。

The researchers were interested in iron, an important nutrient for bacteria during infection. It causes the bacteria to grow and spread. The researchers looked for ways to limit and even stop the spread.
研究人员对铁产生了兴趣。铁是细菌在感染过程中的重要营养素,它让细菌生长和传播。研究人员想要找到限制甚至阻断这种传播的办法。

Microbiology professor Pradeep Singh said they came up with the idea of using a chemical mimic to deploy an antimicrobial drug to fight the bacteria. The researchers decided to use gallium, another metal, because of its similarity to iron.
微生物学教授普瑞迪普·辛赫(Pradeep Singh)表示,他们想到了利用化学模拟物质部署抗菌药物来对抗细菌的想法。研究人员决定使用金属镓,因为它与铁相似。

In laboratory studies, bacteria developed resistance to gallium at low rates. The researchers found that gallium's effectiveness was increased when it was used in combination with some existing antibiotics.
在实验室研究中,细菌对镓产生抗药性的速度非常慢。研究人员发现,当镓与一些现有抗生素联合使用时,它的效果会有所提高。

These findings led the researchers to test gallium in mice and then in human patients. In the mice, the researchers found that a single dosage of gallium cured lung infections that usually killed the animals.
这些研究结果引导研究人员在小白鼠和人类患者身上测试了镓。研究人员发现在小白鼠中,单剂量的镓治愈了通常会杀死动物的肺部感染。

The human tests involved 20 patients with the lung disease cystic fibrosis. Professor Christopher Goss told VOA the gallium was slowly given to the patients in a liquid solution over five days. And while the metal cleared from the blood, it moved to the lungs, helping the patients breathe easier for up to a month.
人体试验涉及了20名肺部囊性纤维化的患者。克里斯托弗·高斯(Christopher Goss)教授对美国之音表示,镓以液体溶液形式在5天内慢慢输入到患者体内。当这些金属从血液中清除时,它们移动到了肺部,帮助患者更轻松地呼吸了长达一个月时间。

An iron Trojan Horse
铁木马

Goss described gallium as a Trojan Horse. "Gallium not only fails to nourish bacteria as iron would, it actually harms them," he said.
高斯将镓描述为一种特洛伊木马。他说:“镓不仅不像铁那样滋养细菌,它实际上还危害细菌。”

The results are reported in the publication Science Translational Medicine.
这些研究结果发表在《科学转化医学》期刊上。

More research is needed to confirm gallium's safety and effectiveness as a treatment. But the study's results suggest that the plan of attack that ended the Trojan War might be helpful in the modern-day battle against superbugs.
需要进行更多研究才能确认镓作为治疗办法的安全性和有效性。但是该研究结果表明,结束特洛伊战争的木马攻击方案可能有助于对抗超级细菌的现代战役。

I'm Pete Musto.
我是皮特·姆斯托。(51VOA.COM原创翻译,禁止转载,违者必究!)