The Current State Of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Essay

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The Current State of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Introduction The rapid emergence of antimicrobial resistant bacteria is a startling problem facing the medical community and this problem is only expected to worsen in the coming years1,4. When Sir Alexander Fleming discovered the first antibiotic, penicillin, in 1928, many proclaimed his finding as the most important modern medical discovery2,4. Simple infections such as pneumonia could be treated rather easily despite the fact that such diagnoses could prove to be commonly fatal in the early 20th century4. Penicillin was also successfully used as a prophylactic treatment to curtail bacterial infections from overcoming the Allied forces during the second World War2,4. However, it was only less than a decade later that the first penicillin resistant bacteria were detected and the once all-powerful antibiotic faced a startling Darwinian reminder: “… the history of evolution is that life escapes all barriers… Life breaks free... Life expands to new territories... Painfully, perhaps even dangerously... But life finds a way”3. It is due to life’s incredible ability to evolve and adapt that we find ourselves in a state of nervousness and apprehension about the “post-antibiotic apocalypse” that is approaching ever so rapidly. In its most recent report, the World Economic Forum Global Risk committee listed antibiotic resistance as one of the greatest threats to human health5. In the United States alone, is is estimated that over
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