• The new patent intends to protect a new antimicrobial peptide, Garvicin A, which has shown high specificity against lactococcosis.
  • Lactococcosis is an emerging disease caused by bacteria, which affects several fish species and causes important economic losses in the aquaculture sector, among others.
  • The pathogen, having the greater economic impact in the farming trout, affects not just Spain but also other countries of the Mediterranean Basin.
  • The bacteria have been also isolated from human clinical episodes associated with severe infections and even septicemia.
  • The new antimicrobial compound can be used to combat the current problems of resistance and specificity facing the industry.

Bionaturis -BNT-MAB-, a leading global company in biological drugs development, and the Complutense University -Madrid- (UCM), have summited a joint patent application intended to protect a new antimicrobial peptide, Garvicin A. The invention provides a new compound and its corresponding formulations to be used as a high-specific antimicrobial product against Lactococcus garvieae, a pathogen bacteria affecting industrial sectors such as the dairy industry or trout fish farming, causing important economic losses annually.

 The novel peptide, not described so far, has shown promising specific in-vitro antibacterial activity. “The use of this unique bacteriocin could lead to a real alternative solution to prevent and treat lactococcosis, meaning a great saving to affected producers”, stated Alicia Gibello, main researcher at UCM.

Javier Gallastegui, the company’s managing director added: “we have chosen this product because its specificity, being able to use it to prevent and treat lactococcosis in living organisms without affecting the natural biota balance of the body. Besides, it’s an alternative over conventional antibiotics where the problem of resistance is an issue of major concerns of global health authorities”. Thus, the biotech company adds a new product to its portfolio of state-of-the-art leads for animal and human health cost-effective solutions.

The scientists from the UCM, co-authors of the invention, work at the Sanidad Animal and Nutricion, Bromatologia, and Tecnologia de Alimentos research departments. The Ictiopatology research group has a broad experience on bacterial infections affecting fish farms. For years, their research has been focused on L. garvieae and as a result they have published several international papers on the field. On the other hand, the scientists from Nutricion, Bromatologia, and Tecnologia de Alimentos work on lactic bacteria and they also count with a huge bunch of high-impact scientific papers.