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Tom Mazanec
2018-Mar-17, 01:04 PM
Why is antibiotic resistance evolving so fast, just because we are using so much of them? Antibiotics are present in nature (that's where we get them from) and have been for millions of years.
I could see heavy use of antibiotics speeding up evolution by an order of magnitude or two, but if it makes resistance in decades, it should naturally evolve in centuries or millennia, which is like seconds in evolutionary time.

grant hutchison
2018-Mar-17, 01:35 PM
Resistance to antibiotics is already widely present in nature, at low levels. But it has a cost to most organisms - they don't need the resistance, but they're still carrying around the genes and expressing the proteins.
What we're doing by deploying massive amounts of antibiotics in the environment is changing the survival value of antibiotic resistance for huge numbers of bacteria, and tipping the equation in favour of their hanging on to resistance genes.

Grant Hutchison

Solfe
2018-Mar-17, 03:39 PM
In my classroom, we have hand sanitizer but they ask us to only use it for "emergencies". They want us using plain soap and water for dirty hands. It's different than antibiotics, but it is amazing how fast you can get a product into the market and the environment that is not so hot.

swampyankee
2018-Mar-17, 04:12 PM
In my classroom, we have hand sanitizer but they ask us to only use it for "emergencies". They want us using plain soap and water for dirty hands. It's different than antibiotics, but it is amazing how fast you can get a product into the market and the environment that is not so hot.

One of the issues with hand sanitizers is that they tend to not work on viruses; the other is that the mechanical effects of scrubbing are important for getting dirt off the skin. They also hurt like a son-of-a-gun when you have open cuts on your hands.

grant hutchison
2018-Mar-17, 04:17 PM
One of the issues with hand sanitizers is that they tend to not work on viruses ...Good for flu virus, not for norovirus. It depends on whether the virus has lipid in its outer coat, which alcohol can disrupt.

Grant Hutchison