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Expanding the Antibiotic Arsenal: A New Drug of Last Resort

Prior to the discovery of antibiotics, bacterial infections were the leading cause of death worldwide. Now, treating infections is often a routine procedure – simply requiring a doctor’s visit and a prescribed antibiotic. However, this simple routine has become marred by the emergence of antibiotic resistance. The misuse and overuse of antibiotics is fueling the rise of resistant bacteria. In response to antibiotic exposure, bacteria have evolved … Continue reading Expanding the Antibiotic Arsenal: A New Drug of Last Resort

MRSA Bacteria

Reversing Resistance: How to teach old antibiotics new tricks

It’s an all-too-common refrain nowadays, but antibiotic resistance remains one of the world’s most severe public health threats.  Bacteria have developed resistance to nearly every antibiotic drug in our arsenal, and the Healthcare Infection Society has estimated that 10 million people will die annually from antibiotic-resistant bacteria by 2050. Hoping to reverse these worrying trends, researchers from Oregon State University and Sarepta Therapeutics have developed … Continue reading Reversing Resistance: How to teach old antibiotics new tricks

Hand washing after handling raw meat or poultry or its packaging is a necessity because anything you touch afterwards could become contaminated. Wash hands with warm water and soap for 20 seconds before and after handling food. Photo courtesy of USDA.



Say Goodbye to Antibacterial Soaps: Why the FDA is banning a household item

by Gabriel W. Rangel figures by Michael Gerhardt How many times per day do you wash your hands? Do you ever think about the type of soap you use? We all know handwashing with soap is an impactful way to maintain health by decreasing the risk of becoming infected with one germ or another. Therefore, using soap with antibacterial compounds added is a no-brainer, right? … Continue reading Say Goodbye to Antibacterial Soaps: Why the FDA is banning a household item

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New technology lets researchers visualize the evolution of antibiotic resistance

Antibiotics are powerful drugs used to treat bacterial infections. Recently, however, a growing number of bacterial infections have developed resistance to many commonly used antibiotics. In fact, the World Health Organization has pegged antibiotic resistance as one of the world’s biggest threats to global health! Bacteria acquire antibiotic resistance by changing in a way that reduces drug effectiveness. In a recent article, a research team … Continue reading New technology lets researchers visualize the evolution of antibiotic resistance

Colistin Resistant E-Coli

Bacteria Resistant to Last-Line Antibiotic Found in US

In May, researchers identified for the first time a bacterial infection in the US that was resistant to the last-resort antibiotic colistin. Colistin was the last remaining antibiotic effective against all bacteria in the country – a weapon of last resort. This particular infection was sensitive to other antibiotics and was cured, but the presence of colistin resistant bacteria in the US (it was known … Continue reading Bacteria Resistant to Last-Line Antibiotic Found in US

Bacterial superpowers

Irresistible: Stopping bacteria from acquiring evil superpowers

The news is filled with stories of bacteria beating antibiotics – over time, bacteria can become resistant to drugs that are used to fight them. Unfortunately, this means that the “wonder drug” you thought could cure your infection may eventually be outsmarted by the bacteria it was designed to treat. In order to tackle bacterial resistance, scientists have devoted substantial effort to understanding how bacteria … Continue reading Irresistible: Stopping bacteria from acquiring evil superpowers

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Antibiotic Resistance: Old genes, new problems

by Alexandra Cantley figures by Joy Jiao and Shannon McArdel Over the last several years, antibiotic resistance has gripped the attention of the public. Recently, newspapers have alerted us to a “superbug” in China and detailed the struggles of Daniel Fells, a Giants team member who is facing surgery for a persistent MRSA infection [1,2]. Yet, a recent survey conducted by the World Health Organization … Continue reading Antibiotic Resistance: Old genes, new problems