A relatively new super bug may have met its match in a 1,000-year-old eye treatment, according to researchers from the University of Nottingham.
The recipe to cure eye infections comes from "Bald’s Leechbook," an old English leather-bound tome that was buried deep within the British Library in London. When scientists painstakingly followed a step-by-step recipe to recreate the old world salve, they found it killed over 90 percent of a Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus -- also known as the MRSA bacteria -- that was grown in a petri dish of mouse cells.
The tenth-century concoction contained two species of allium (garlic, plus either onion or leek), wine from a vineyard that has existed since the ninth century and oxgall, the bile from a cow’s stomach. A very specific set of instructions included brewing the solution in a brass vessel, straining it through a cloth and then letting the mixture sit for nine days before use.
The researchers concluded it wasn’t one particular ingredient that did the trick but rather the entire recipe.
“We thought that Bald’s eye salve might show a small amount of antibiotic activity, because each of the ingredients has been shown by other researchers to have some effect on bacteria in the lab," Freya Harrison, one of the lead Nottingham researchers, said in a statement. “But we were absolutely blown away by just how effective the combination of ingredients was.”
This MRSA bacterium is bad news.
Scientists have been working for years and years now, trying to find something that will kill this stuff reliably.
It has mutated and become immune to most antibiotics available.
You can bet your ass that some pharmacy outfit has already filed a patent application.