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Chapter 2 : A Brief Look at the History of Antibiotics

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A Brief Look at the History of Antibiotics, Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

Streptomycin, sulfa drugs, and penicillin were the first antibiotics to move from the laboratory into general clinical use. Subsequently, scientists have developed many new forms of these antibiotics and are currently looking for new types of antibiotics with targets different from those of the older antibiotics. Soil bacteria and fungi are proved to be rich sources of antibiotics, such as penicillin and tetracycline, that were much more human friendly than gramicidin. Even at the earliest steps in the discovery of what would ultimately become one of the most important antibiotic classes ever discovered, the penicillin family of antibiotics, scientists also saw the first evidence that bacteria could become resistant to penicillin. Azidothymidine (AZT) is an anti-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) compound that does not cure HIV infection but at least slows the progression of the infection to AIDS and has prolonged the survival of many AIDS patients. It is now very expensive to test new antibiotics for safety and efficacy in countries like the United States.

Citation: Salyers A, Whitt D. 2005. A Brief Look at the History of Antibiotics, p 17-25. In Revenge of the Microbes. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817602.ch2

Key Concept Ranking

Staphylococcus aureus
0.5071309
Folic Acid
0.5071309
Staphylococcus aureus
0.5071309
Bacterial Pneumonia
0.50419486
Escherichia coli
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0.5071309
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Figures

Image of Figure 2.1
Figure 2.1

, a cause of serious wound infections, as seen with an electron microscope. (Courtesy of Janice Carr, CDC, Atlanta, Ga.)

Citation: Salyers A, Whitt D. 2005. A Brief Look at the History of Antibiotics, p 17-25. In Revenge of the Microbes. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817602.ch2
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Image of Figure 2.2
Figure 2.2

Fleming's plate of colonies, which shows an area of clearing around the much larger colony of at the top of the plate. © Bettmann/CORBIS.

Citation: Salyers A, Whitt D. 2005. A Brief Look at the History of Antibiotics, p 17-25. In Revenge of the Microbes. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817602.ch2
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