Microbes and antibiotics

An annotated selection of World Wide Web sites relevant to the topics in Microbial Biotechnology

Authors

  • Lawrence P. Wackett

    McKnight Professor
    1. Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology & Biophysics, BioTechnology Institute, University of Minnesota, MN, USA
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List of antibiotics: Wikipedia

The http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_antibiotics

This is an excellent starting point for research on antibiotics. The site contains a large list of antibiotics that is arranged into different structural classes.

Antibiotics: actions, origins and resistance

http://forms.asm.org/microbe/index.asp?bid=28714

This review describes a book that provides an excellent background on the types of antibiotics, their synthesis and their mechanisms of action.

Timeline of antibiotics: Wikipedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_antibiotics

This timeline shows the dates of introduction of new antibiotics. It should be noted that the major classes of antibiotics were largely discovered more than 40 years ago and that many recent antibiotics are elaborations on existing antibiotic structures.

Are we running out of antibiotics?

http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2010/12/07/are-we-running-out-of-antibiotics.html

This article for a general audience lays out the idea that the discovery of new types of antibiotics has fallen off in recent years and that antibiotic resistance is increasingly a problem in the practice of medicine.

Chronic, low antibiotic dosage and obesity

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v488/n7413/full/nature11400.html

Long-term, sub-therapeutic doses of antibiotics can increase weight gain for a given dietary intake. This has positive implications for purposeful increase in the weight of farm animals but negative consequences for humans where obesity is a major current health concern.

Antibiotics: open access journal

http://www.mdpi.com/journal/antibiotics

This link is for the open access journal Antibiotics.

Silver makes antibiotics more effective

http://www.nature.com/news/silver-makes-antibiotics-thousands-of-times-more-effective-1.13232

Silver compounds have long been known to have antimicrobial activity, but new research suggests that silver acts synergistically with many common organic antibiotics and thus could help against antibiotic resistance issues.

Antibiotics and innovation: Pew Charitable Trusts

http://www.pewhealth.org/projects/antibiotics-and-innovation-project-85899367216

The Pew Charitable Trusts has invested in research and societal issues related to antibiotic resistance and new antibiotic development.

Antibiotics may harm mitochondria

http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/36329/title/The-Downside-of-Antibiotics-/

A recent report suggests that antibiotics may damage the mitochondria in animal cells. This is interesting in the context of human health and evolution because mitochondria are thought to derive from prokaryotic cells.

Bacterial resistance to antibiotics

http://textbookofbacteriology.net/resantimicrobial.html

These pages from Ken Todar's online microbiology textbook give an excellent overview of antibiotics.

Antibiotics: Sigma-Aldrich

http://www.sigmaaldrich.com/chemistry/chemistry-products.html?TablePage=14572853

This catalogue page provides links to lists of antibiotics, information on chemical classes and the mechanism of action of antibiotics.

How antibiotics work still controversial

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=antibiotics-more-mysterious-than-appear

This popular science article discusses some of the controversies concerning the mechanisms of action of antibiotics.

Questioning multiple-antibiotic strategies

http://www.plosbiology.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pbio.1001540

There is a common perception that combining antibiotics for medical treatment is the best way to protect health and prevent antibiotic resistance. The present paper uses computer simulations and experiments to suggest otherwise.

Streptomyces: Wikipedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streptomyces

The major antibiotic-producing genus is the bacterial genus Streptomyces.

Streptomyces: Microbe Wiki

http://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.php/Streptomyces

This Microbe Wiki site discusses Streptomyces and the antibiotics they produce.

New way to improve antibiotic production

http://www.bbsrc.ac.uk/news/industrial-biotechnology/2013/130618-pr-improve-antibiotic-production.aspx

This report describes a discovery in which an antibiotic provides a regulatory signal for a bacterium to produce more antibiotics. This could be used as a strategy to increase the industrial production of antibiotics.

Soil bacteria eat antibiotics

http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/33609/title/Soil-Bacteria-May–Eat–Antibiotics/

This popular news article describes research in which bacteria can use antibiotics as a carbon and energy source. The danger is that high-level antibiotic degradation activity might spread among microbial populations.

The business of antibiotics: Forbes

http://www.forbes.com/sites/stephenbrozak/2013/05/07/the-antibiotic-bubble-a-quest-for-continued-antibiotic-effectiveness/

This article deals with the business aspects of antibiotics and antibiotic resistance.

Speeding up the introduction of new antibiotics

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/03/health/experts-debate-plan-to-speed-antibiotic-development.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

There are rising concerns that businesses do not have suitable incentives to develop new antibiotics and programmes are emerging to stimulate new research on antibiotics.

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