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Synthesizing Antimicrobial Peptides to Battle Bacteria & Cancer

Tubes, catheters, and other artificial points of access into patients' bodies allow the direct delivery of drugs and nutrients, help with breathing, and more. Yet these conduits also pose a risk. If bacteria can get into them, they have a shortcut past the patient's defenses. Erdogan Gulari, professor of chemical engineering at the University of Michigan, believes that these devices could be made to fight off the bacteria with a coating of antimicrobial molecules. Gulari's team is working to synthesize and find antimicrobial peptides that will battle selective targets such as cancer.