Garlic is one of those spices that always make it to the top of your grocery list. Raw, chopped or pressed, garlic gives your food a strong, pungent and ravishing flavor. You can pair it with just about everything – tomatoes, onions, chicken, cottage cheese, butter, fish, prawns, mutton and even white wine. Sometimes, just the smell of fried garlic is enough to pull you into the kitchen.
Garlic contains a chemical that kills bacteria responsible for life-threatening lung infections in people having cystic fibrosis, the study indicated. Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disorder that mostly affects the lungs.
The chemical noted in the study, called allicin, could turn into an effective treatment against a large group of infectious bacteria that has a high resistance to antibiotics.
The study was published in the journal PLOS one.
“At a time when novel antimicrobial agents are urgently required, chemical and microbiological research has the potential to unlock the rich reservoir of antimicrobial compounds present in plants such as garlic,” said professor John Govan from the University of Edinburgh in Britain.
Allicin is produced naturally by garlic bulbs to stave off a closely-related group of plant pathogens found in soil and water habitats. But in humans it can keep away the bacteria Burkholderia Cepacia Complex (BCC) which causes serious and transmissible lung infections in people with cystic fibrosis.
The chemical, becoming available when by crushiung the garlic, inhibits the growth of bacteria.
To kill the Bcc bacteria, allicin chemically modifies certain key enzyme in bacteria, researchers clarified.
Scientists in the team believe allicin-containing remedies are likely candidates for a mixture of existing antiobiotics to treat Bcc infections.