Biomarker Discovered for Flesh-Eating Pathogen That Can Blind or Kill Healthy Young People

Updated August 1, 2018

Research by Thomas A. Russo, MD, professor of medicine and chief of infectious diseases, investigated the hypervirulent Klebsiella pneumoniae, a rare but increasingly common strain of the pathogen that can infect completely healthy people, is resistant to all antibiotics and can cause blindness in one day and flesh-eating infections, brain abscesses and death in just a few days. “What’s increasingly concerning is the growing number of reports that describe strains of hypervirulent K. pneumoniae that are antimicrobial resistant,” he said. “A bug that's both hypervirulent and challenging to treat is a bad combination.”