Antibacterial Evaluation of Synthetic Thiazole Compounds In Vitro and In Vivo in a Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) Skin Infection Mouse Model
The emergence of community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), including strains resistant to current antibiotics, has contributed to an increase in the number of skin infections reported in humans in recent years. New therapeutic options are needed to counter this public health challenge. The aim of the present study was to examine the potential of thiazole compounds synthesized by our research group to be used topically to treat MRSA skin and wound infections. The broth microdilution method confirmed that the lead thiazole compound and four analogues are capable of inhibiting MRSA growth at concentrations as low as 1.3 μg/mL. Additionally, three compounds exhibited a synergistic relationship when combined with the topical antibiotic mupirocin against MRSA in vitro via the checkerboard assay. Thus the thiazole compounds have potential to be used alone or in combination with mupirocin against MRSA. When tested against human keratinocytes, four derivatives of the lead compound demonstrated an improved toxicity profile (were found to be non-toxic up to a concentration of 20 μg/mL). Utilizing a murine skin infection model, we confirmed that the lead compound and three analogues exhibited potent antimicrobial activity in vivo, with similar capability as the antibiotic mupirocin, as they reduced the burden of MRSA present in skin wounds by more than 90%. Taken altogether, the present study provides important evidence that these thiazole compounds warrant further investigation for development as novel topical antimicrobials to treat MRSA skin infections.