About this Research Topic
We are living in an era where antibiotic resistance forms one of the biggest health threats to our society. While antibiotics are the most successful medicines to treat pathogenic microorganisms, antimicrobial resistance continues to rise and antibiotics lose their effectiveness. In addition, many organisms have developed strategies to cope with stress encountered in the environment or in the presence of antimicrobials. This survival mechanism is a major problem for the host immune system as well as for the therapeutic effectiveness of drugs.
It is only a matter of time before pathogens become resistant to all available antibiotics and therefore untreatable. There is an urgent need to find new targets to treat resistant bacteria. Ideally, new therapeutics should only target pathogenic organisms while not affecting the host or other commensal strains. This could for example be achieved by targeting a specific response that is only activated by pathogenic strains when they have to cope with environmental stress. The stringent stress response is a conserved bacterial mechanism that is only activated when cells encounter stress. Recent advances in the field have shown that this stress response can be specifically targeted, thereby sensitizing pathogens to antibiotic treatment.
The aim of this Topic is to target pathogens when they are the most vulnerable.
Submissions for this Research Topic can by in any supported format (e.g., Original Research, Review, Opinion, Commentary), as long as they are concerning the following themes:
• Stress as a therapeutic target;
• Downstream effectors of the stringent stress response;
• Antibiotics, persistence and tolerance: overcoming antibiotic resistance through targeting the stringent stress response;
• Host environment: stressors and microbial communities affecting the stringent stress response.
Keywords: stringent stress response, targeted therapy, antimicrobial resistance
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.