Project #47207 - Article

Part 1 (due Nov. 16): Read the "Antibiotic-Resistance" topic below, then find an interesting scholarly or science news article (e.g., ScienceDaily, Scientific American, Science News, or a journal articles) about a scientific study about the problem of antibiotic resistance in medicine today or about one way researchers are attempting to discover new drug targets and antibiotics to treat bacterial infections. In your own words describe the purpose or hypothesis of the study, what the researchers did (briefly in two or three sentences, one major finding and what it means, and a sentence about what you found interesting about the article (full credit will not be earned for responses copied or quoted from your source). Articles must be from 2009-2014. Include a complete citation for your article and other sources of information. 

 

Antibiotic Resistance: A Global Health Problem

"The evolution of antibiotic resistance is now occurring at an alarming rate and is outpacing the development of new countermeasures capable of thwarting infections in humans. This situation threatens patient care, economic growth, public health, agriculture, economic security, and national security." (Report to the President on Combating Antibiotic Resistance, September 2014, p. 1). This year Get Smart about Antibiotics Week is November 17-23 (CDCa, 2014,http://www.cdc.gov/getsmart/week/index.html). The purpose is let people know more about the increasing threat of antibiotic resistance and to educate them about why appropriate antibiotic use is important. The Web site includes information resources for health profession, policy makers, and the general public. The page for policy makers includes a link to the report on combating antibiotic resistance by the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.

 

The number of cases and deaths associated with antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria has been increasing. "On any given day, approximately one in 25 U.S. patients has at least one infection contracted during the course of their hospital care", and the most common bacteria causing them have become increasingly resistant to antibiotics and some even to carbapenems, last-resort antibiotics. (CDCb, 2014). 

Strains of Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) are considered to be life-threatening. Strains of MRSA, first identified in 1961, are resistant to multiple broad spectrum antibiotics previously effective for staph infections. It is estimated that 2% of the staph infections in 1974 were caused by strains of MRSA, this increased to 22% for 1995 and 63% for 2004 (CDCc, 2014). Most cases of the MRSA infections occur in hospitals and other health care settings, however, healthy people can become infected and strains of MRSA have been found in farm animals (University of Iowa, 2009). MRSA is only one example of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria that have become a significant health problem. 

 

In 2010 there was an outbreak of multidrug resistant Klebsiella pneumonia, a gram negative bacillus, in Brazilia. It was reported that about 200 people had been hospitalized with infection with the bacterium and that 18 people had died from the infection. The bacterium produces carbanpenmase, a new class of enzyme, which is resistant to carbapnems, a class of antibiotics that used to be effective in treating K. pneumonia infections .. In 2001 Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase infections were found in one state in the U.S., but within the past 10 years infections have become widespread and have been found in 37 states (CDCa, Fact Sheet, Resistance anywhere is resistance everywhere). An increase in antibiotic-resistance in tuberculosis (TB) is another concern. Although, treatments have been effective in decreasing the incidence (i.e., the rate of new cases in a population) of tuberculosis (TB), there is evidence of an increase in the occurrence of cases of multidrug-resistant and extensively drug-resistant TB (MDR TB and XDR TB). Individuals with XDR TB don't respond to the first-line drugs for treatment as well as some of the drugs used as a second-line of treatment. There are about 0.5 million cases of MDR TB per year (CDCd, 2014). 

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria have been isolated in some meat products. The addition of antibiotics to livestock food or care regimens is a strategy to increase their growth rates or prevent disease. Almost 80% of the antibiotics used in the U.S. are for animals used for meat or other food products (see the bottom bar in the figure below). This use is considered to be one of the causes for the increase in bacteria resistance to antibiotics used to treat humans (FDA, 2012). As illustrated in the figure below, the estimated use of antibiotics in livestock is more than 6-fold higher than antibiotic use in humans (Science News, 08 March 2014, p. 5)

 

Subject Science
Due By (Pacific Time) 11/15/2014 12:00 am
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