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Research Article

Sensitization of Staphylococcus aureus to Methicillin and Other Antibiotics In Vitro and In Vivo in the Presence of HAMLET

  • Laura R. Marks,

    Affiliation: Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York, United States of America

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  • Emily A. Clementi,

    Affiliation: Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York, United States of America

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  • Anders P. Hakansson mail

    andersh@buffalo.edu

    Affiliations: Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York, United States of America, The Witebsky Center for Microbial Pathogenesis and Immunology, University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York, United States of America, New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences. University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York, United States of America

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  • Published: May 01, 2013
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0063158

Reader Comments (3)

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HAMLET Increases Effectiveness of DHEA Against Antibiotic-Resistant Organisms

Posted by jamesmhoward on 03 May 2013 at 14:00 GMT

t is my hypothesis that testosterone is increasing within the population. I think this is the cause of the “Secular Trend,” the increase in size and earlier puberty in children. The changes in testosterone affect availability of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). One of the consequences of increasing testosterone is reduced immune response as high testosterone may reduce the availability of DHEA and, therefore, its natural stimulus of the immune system.

I think this is why antibiotic-resistant organisms are increasing within the population. When DHEA is present in optimal amounts, the immune system mounts a sufficient response in individuals with optimal DHEA. As DHEA declines within the population, antibiotic-resistant organisms increase.

It is my hypothesis that cortisol (stress) evolved to counteract the positive effects of DHEA on neuronal function.  That is, cortisol reduces initial motivation produced by DHEA to continue during “fight or flight” circumstances. An increased cortisol to DHEA ratio also reduces the effects of DHEA in tissues other than the brain.

Cortisol in excess for prolonged times reduces the immune response.

Alpha-lactalbumin has been demonstrated to increase prolactin and decrease cortisol (Am J Clin Nutr. 2000 Jun;71(6):1536-44). Prolactin is a specific and direct stimulator of DHEA production. Therefore, alpha-lactalbumin increases DHEA and reduces cortisol.

I suggest the findings of Marks, et al., may be explained by increases in available DHEA and reduction in cortisol which increases the natural ability of the immune response to antibiotic-resistant organisms.

No competing interests declared.