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The natural world. Looking pretty for 3.5b years.

Forgotten Microbe Could Transform Medicine

Forgotten Microbe Could Transform Medicine

Author: Hugh Bollinger/Friday, November 16, 2018/Categories: natural history, sustainability, art and design, environment

                      Electron-micrograph of Phages Attacking a Bacteria (credit: Wikicommons)

It has been less than a century since antibiotics were discovered and began being used in medicine. The Spanish Flu, caused by airborne infection, occurred prior to their discovery and "resulted in the deaths of 50 to 100 million people (three to five percent of the world's population), making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in human history". Antibiotics were a revolutionary procedure and have now been used worldwide in healthcare, agriculture, and all facets of medicine. Unfortunately, their overuse has produced multi-resistant strains of bacteria (MRSA) with the fundamental process of evolution by natural selection. Discovery of new antibiotics has been slow. 

Alexander Belcredi of Phagomed, a biotechnology group, presented a new strategy at a recent TED event. His approach is based on the biology of the competition between viruses and bacteria in nature. If successful, this approach using bacteriophages could resolve this critical antibiotic resistence problem and represent another revolution in medicine.



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