OCT 19, 2016 2:56 PM PDT

Could the Next Antibiotic be Hidden on the Ocean Floor?

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

In 1928, Alexander Fleming transformed the world of medicine with the discovery of the first antibiotic, penicillin. Scientists soon found ways to mass-produce the antibiotic. And they also extended the list of available antibiotics to other types of bacteria.

However, the Golden Age of antibiotics discovery in the 1950s and 1960s has since come and gone. And today, we've not added a new antibiotic to the list in decades. Such stagnant output would be okay, except that the bacteria are catching up and becoming resistant to the drugs we already have.

Now, pressured by the rise of drug-resistant superbugs, scientists are doubling on the efforts to stop antibiotic resistance while simultaneously working to discover new potent antibiotics. And scientists are scouring in one unconventional location for new drugs: the ocean floor. This resource is teeming with microbes and rich in other biodiversity, making it a promising place to begin the new search.
About the Author
  • I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
You May Also Like
OCT 29, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Einstein: Gravity? What Gravity?
OCT 29, 2020
Einstein: Gravity? What Gravity?
Try imagining a fictional conversation between Issac Newton and Albert Einstein: "The apple falls toward the ground ...
NOV 06, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
The Most Powerful X-ray Source On Earth
NOV 06, 2020
The Most Powerful X-ray Source On Earth
Located inside the Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Z Pulsed Power Facility (or Z Machine) i ...
JUN 05, 2021
Cannabis Sciences
Washington State University Opens Cannabis Research Center
JUN 05, 2021
Washington State University Opens Cannabis Research Center
Washington State University (WSU) has announced the opening of a multi-disciplinary research center with nearly 100 scie ...
JUL 13, 2021
Earth & The Environment
Artificial Lighting Disrupts Pollinating Insects' Vision
JUL 13, 2021
Artificial Lighting Disrupts Pollinating Insects' Vision
Artificial lighting can affect the eyesight of moths that rely on night-time vision, such as the elephant hawkmoth. The ...
JUL 15, 2021
Neuroscience
Like Humans, Rats Help Friends Before Strangers
JUL 15, 2021
Like Humans, Rats Help Friends Before Strangers
Just like humans, rats tend to help members of their own social group before strangers. The findings may help researcher ...
OCT 15, 2021
Health & Medicine
The Art of the Smize: Study Shows Eyes are More Active in Smiling Behind a Mask
OCT 15, 2021
The Art of the Smize: Study Shows Eyes are More Active in Smiling Behind a Mask
Mask wearing has become a part of our everyday lives. Something that we have all adapted to because of this is expressin ...
Loading Comments...