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)
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
Antibiotic-munching microbes may prove useful for mopping up contaminated water supplies and land.
The problem of antimicrobial resistance won't go away as long as people in poor countries don't have access to clean water.
Vchal / www.shutterstock.com
New research shows just 1% of E. coli bacteria's genetic mutations are lethal.
Antibiotic resistance is not new but recent developments increase the urgency for action.
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.
High-tech ways to scan nature’s own creations.
Pharmaceutical companies focus on small molecules they've devised – and can easily patent. But nature's already come up with many antibacterial compounds that drug designers could use to make medicines.
A giant ant carries a dead fellow in the name of cleanliness.
Ants produce their own antimicrobial chemicals to fight bacteria.
Potting mix is known to carry harmful bacteria and fungi.
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash
The risk of bacterial or fungal infection from potting mix is very low. Wearing gloves and washing your hands will keep it even lower.
Pills and ills.
Antimicrobial stewardship is proving effective, but we're not fully across what is happening.
Bacteria don't just mutate to beat antibiotics, they also make changes on the fly.
India's laissez-faire attitude to drug regulation is a serious threat to global efforts to tackle antimicrobial resistance.
Some patients may be prescribed antibiotics as preventatives, rather than to treat infections.
We know overuse and inappropriate use of antibiotics contribute to resistance, so it's important we develop strategies to improve practice.
Sure it tastes nice, but what else can it do?
Manuka honey has a lot of evidence-based benefits, and a lot of rubbish claims too.
Plants make proteins based on whatever genetic material you give them.
Carl Davies, CSIRO
Inserting a random DNA mishmash into a plant or bacterium directs it to make a novel protein. Sifting through the resulting molecules, researchers may find ones have medical or agricultural uses.
John Gerrard says a developed city like Sydney could not cope with an epidemic of the scale of the recent Ebola outbreak.
Speaking with: Dr. John Gerrard on infectious diseases.
The Conversation, CC BY-ND 23.2 MB (download)
William Isdale speaks to Dr. John Gerrard about the constant threat of infectious diseases and what we can do to prevent a deadly pandemic from establishing itself in Australia.
5 second Studio / Shutterstock.com
Promising scientific consensus is a perilous principle on which to found meaningful engagement between experts and the public.
To finish, or not to finish, your course of antibiotics? There’s little doubt that you shouldn’t stop midstream.
New reports that stopping antibiotics when you feel better is better for you could do more harm than good. But it has reopened the debate on how long antibiotics should be used.
Green colonies of allergenic fungus Penicillium from air spores on a petri dish. Penicillin was the first antibiotic.
We've been told for a long time that we must take all of our antibiotics. But maybe we didn’t need so many to begin with. Here's why.
An article in a leading health journal causes confusion and undoes years of hard work in raising awareness of antibiotic resistance.
Simple and inexpensive gene-editing technology such as CRISPR has made the creation of genetically modified organisms much easier. But could nature still keep the upper hand?