Articles on Antibiotics

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Antibiotics are only useful for treating infections caused by bacteria, not viruses or fungi. from shutterstock.com

Health Check: I’m taking antibiotics – when will they start working?

It's hard to predict how long it will take to feel better after you start taking antibiotics. But if you start feeling worse one to two days after starting the therapy, you must see your doctor.
There already exist some promising new antibiotic therapies, and more are in the pipeline. However, our economic model prevents researchers from moving them out onto the market. (Shutterstock)

Humanity under threat from antibiotic-resistant infections

The end of effective antibiotics will be frightening. Life expectancy will fall dramatically and people of all ages will die from illnesses that we are used to treating with $10 worth of pills.
Clostridium difficile bacteria causes diarrhea and inflammation of the colon. By Kateryna Kon/shutterstock.com

A novel ‘smart’ antibiotic may target most common bacterial infection contracted in US hospitals

A new type of antibiotic uses DNA to fight a common deadly microbe, Clostridium difficile. These new drugs are inexpensive and adaptable and can be modified to target any bacterium, lowering the chance of drug resistance.
Cattle that are grass-fed, antibiotic- and growth hormone-free gather at a farm in Oregon in 2015. There’s a debate over whether antibiotic use in livestock makes germs more resistant to the drugs, and results in infections being passed on to humans who consume the meat. (AP Photo/Don Ryan)

Why reducing antibiotics in farm animals isn’t as easy as it seems

The use of antibiotics in raising livestock is complex. We could be moving towards a less-than-ideal result due to poor understanding, over-simplistic messaging and a rush for competitive advantage.
Bacteria in the dish on the left are sensitive to antibiotics in the paper discs. The ones on the right are resistant to four of the seven antibiotics. Dr. Graham Beards

Bacteria may be powerful weapon against antibiotic resistance

Antibiotic-munching microbes may prove useful for mopping up contaminated water supplies and land.
Antibiotic resistance is not new but recent developments increase the urgency for action. Shutterstock

‘Super gonorrhoea’ raises the stakes in the war against superbugs

Superbugs used to pose the greatest risk to people with compromised immune systems and those who had surgery. But their sexual transmission means antibiotic resistance can spread much more widely.

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