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Infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa often pose problems for burn wound treatments. We developed a new kind of bandage that prevents these infections and reduces the use of antibiotics, thereby lowering the risk of developing antibiotic resistance. The bandage consists of a hydrogel that contains genetically engineered Lactococcus lactis with nutrients. The engineered strain of L. lactis detects the quorum sensing molecules of the two pathogens in the wound and subsequently produces the antimicrobial nisin as well as some other Infection-Preventing-Molecules (IPMs). These IPMs are the anti-biofilm protein Dispersin B and the quorum quenching protein AHLase. The gel is placed between two layers, a top layer to allow diffusion of gases and a bottom layer to contain the bacteria within the bandage. Hydrating the gel by breaking adjacent water pockets initiates the growth of the bacteria, thereby activating the bandage.
We reached out to the public and spread amazement and inspiration. Apart from that, we considered the ethical implications and future of our project and constructively thought about GMO regulation.