• Question: how do we beat bacteria?

    Asked by anon-248681 to Zoya, Tom, Stacey, Laura, James, Connor on 13 Mar 2020.
    • Photo: Zoya

      Zoya answered on 13 Mar 2020:

      Antibiotics like penicillin are used to kill bacteria. Different antibiotics have different functions, some will stop the bacteria from reproducing, others can cause it to stop making crucial proteins for survival.
      The major problem the world is now facing is antibiotic resistance because of over use of antibiotics, people sometimes also dont complete entire doses of antibiotics which gives the bacteria the oppurtunity to learn about the med and become smarter and develop defences against it, so the next time you fall sick and take the medicine, the bacteria can fight it making the medicine useless.
      MRSA is a huge issue now because it is resistant to medication.
      Other bacterial strains may be killed by simple methods like heat, alcohol or UV radiation 🦠🧫

    • Photo: Connor Prior

      Connor Prior answered on 13 Mar 2020:

      Bacteria are beaten by anti-biotics. There are several different types of anti-biotics ALL with different ways to attack the bacteria (this is called “mode of action”). For example, penicillin is a anti-biotic (probably the most famous one. Others include, erythromycin, vancomycin, tetracyclin and LOADS more. The issue is, that after repeated exposure to loads of different anti-biotics the bacteria that do survive become immune to those anti-biotics.

      You may have heard of MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). Staphylococcus aureus is a very common bacteria. However, once resistant to several types of anti-biotics it is lethal. Therefore there is a huge drive to find new anti-biotics – ones which common bacteria would never have seen before. This will increase the chance of the bacteria not surviving a dose of the new anti-biotics.