Motherboard - Scientists Found a Way to Make Drug-Resistant Bacteria ‘Evolve Backwards’
This is great news! Making bacteria that have become resistant to antibiotics, susceptible to the drugs once more, could save millions of lives. Kaleigh Rogers reports
Researchers have proposed a way to force antibiotic resistant bacteria to “evolve backwards” into a pre-resistant state, according to a study published Wednesday in Plos One. It’s just one example of the out-of-the-box thinking science is taking to tackle the problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria before it’s too late.
The team of biologists and mathematicians from the University of California Merced, UC Berkeley, and American University teamed up to look at how antibiotic resistant grew along with antibiotics over the last 80 years.
“There was kind of an arms race for about 20 years where pharmaceutical companies just kept changing the cephalosporins (a common antibiotic) and kept changing penicillin to get away from the resistant bacteria,” Miriam Barlow, co-author of the study and a biologist at UC Merced, told me over the phone. “But every time they did, the resistance could just evolve.”
I have to thank Wrench Wrench for alerting me to this story, via a comment on another LGF post!