bacteria Archives - Dr. Leonard : Dr. Leonard

RSSAll Entries Tagged With: "bacteria"

Civil War Plant Medicines DISARM Drug-Resistant Bacteria In Lab Tests

drug resistant bacteriaDuring the height of the Civil War, the Confederate Surgeon General commissioned a guide to traditional plant remedies of the South, as battlefield physicians faced high rates of infections among the wounded and shortages of conventional medicines. A new study of three of the plants from this guide — the white oak, the tulip poplar, and the devil’s walking stick — find that they have antiseptic properties.

Scientific Reports is publishing the results of the study led by scientists at Emory University. The results show that extracts from the plants have antimicrobial activity against one or more of a trio of dangerous species of multi-drug-resistant bacteria associated with wound infections: Acinetobacter baumannii, Staphylococcus aureus, and Klebsiella pneumoniae.

“Our findings suggest that the use of these topical therapies may have saved some limbs, and maybe even lives, during the Civil War,” says Cassandra Quave, senior author of the paper and assistant professor at Emory’s Center for the Study of Human Health and the School of Medicine’s Department of Dermatology.

Quave is an ethnobotanist, studying how people use plants in traditional healing practices, to uncover promising candidates for new drugs. “Ethnobotany is essentially the science of survival — how people get by when limited to what’s available in their immediate environment,” she says. “The Civil War guide to plant remedies is a great example of that.”

“Our research might one day benefit modern wound care if we can identify which compounds are responsible for the antimicrobial activity,” adds Micah Dettweiler, the first author of the paper.

If the active ingredients are identified, “it is my hope that we can then [further] test these molecules in our world-renowned models of bacterial infection,” says co-author Daniel Zurawski, chief of pathogenesis and virulence for the Wound Infections Department at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research.

“I’ve always been a Civil War buff,” Zurawski adds. “I am also a firm believer in learning everything we can garner from the past so we can benefit now from the knowledge and wisdom of our ancestors.”

Additional co-authors on the paper include Ryan Reddinger, from the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research; James Lyles, from the Quave lab; and Kate Nelson, from Emory School of Medicine’s Department of Dermatology.

Dettweiler was still an Emory undergraduate when he heard about the Civil War plant guide and decided to research it for his honors thesis. He has since graduated with a degree in biology and now works as a research specialist in the Quave lab.

“I was surprised to learn that far more Civil War soldiers died from disease than in battle,” he says. “I was also surprised at how common amputation was as a medical treatment for an infected wound.”

About one in 13 surviving Civil War soldiers went home with one or more missing limbs, according to the American Battlefield Trust.

At the time of the Civil War, from 1861 to 1865, germ theory was in its developmental stages and only gradually beginning to gain acceptance. Formal medical training for physicians was also in its infancy. An antiseptic was simply defined as a tonic used to prevent “mortification of the flesh.” Iodine and bromine were sometimes used to treat infections, according to the National Museum of Civil War Medicine, although the reason for their effectiveness was unknown.

Other conventional medicines available at the time included quinine, for treating malaria, and morphine and chloroform, to block pain.

Military field hospitals within the Confederacy, however, did not have reliable access to these medicines due to a blockade — the Union Navy closely monitored the major ports of the South to prevent the Confederacy from trading.

Seeking alternatives, the Confederacy commissioned Francis Porcher, a botanist, and surgeon from South Carolina, to compile a book of medicinal plants of the Southern states, including plant remedies used by Native Americans and enslaved Africans. “Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests,” published in 1863, was a major compendium of uses for different plants, including a description of 37 species for treating gangrene and other infections. Samuel Moore, the Confederate Surgeon General, drew from Porcher’s work to produce a document called “Standard supply table of the indigenous remedies for field service and the sick in general hospitals.”

For the current study, the researchers focused on three plant species Porcher cited for antiseptic use that grows in Lullwater Preserve on the Emory campus. They included two common hardwood trees — the white oak (Quercus alba) and the tulip poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera) — as well as a thorny, woody shrub commonly known as the devil’s walking stick (Aralia spinosa).

Samples of these three plants were gathered from campus specimens, based on Porcher’s specifications. Extracts were taken from white oak bark and galls; tulip poplar leaves, root inner bark and branch bark; and the devil’s walking stick leaves. The extracts were then tested on three species of multi-drug-resistant bacteria commonly found in wound infections.

Aceinetobacter baumannii — better known as “Iraqibacter” due to its association with wounded combat troops returning from the Iraq War — exhibits extensive resistance to most first-line antibiotics. “It’s emerging as a major threat for soldiers recovering from battle wounds and for hospitals in general,” Quave says.

Staphylococcus aureus is considered the most dangerous of many common staph bacteria and can spread from skin infections or medical devices through the bloodstream and infect distant organs. Klebsiella pneumoniae is another leading cause of hospital infection and can result in life-threatening cases of pneumonia and septic shock.

Laboratory tests showed that extracts from the white oak and tulip poplar inhibited the growth of S. aureus, while the white oak extracts also inhibited the growth of A. baumannii and K. pneumoniae. Extracts from both of these plants also inhibited S. aureus from forming biofilms, which can act like a shield against antibiotics.

Extracts from the devil’s walking stick inhibited both biofilm formation and quorum sensing in S. aureus. Quorum sensing is a signaling system that staph bacteria use to manufacture toxins and ramp up virulence. Blocking this system essentially “disarms” the bacteria.

Traditional plant remedies are often dismissed if they don’t actively attack and kill pathogens, Quave notes, adding: “There are many more ways to help cure infections, and we need to focus on them in the era of drug-resistant bacteria.”

“Plants have a great wealth of chemical diversity, which is one more reason to protect natural environments,” Dettweiler says. He plans to go to graduate school with a focus on researching plants for either medical or agricultural purposes. “I’m interested in plants because, even though they don’t move from place to place, they are extremely powerful and important.”

Article published by Emory University. Image by Stephen Nowland of Emory University.

We need to stop sanitizing everything and let bacteria back in our lives

Dr. Jack Gilbert wants to make our hospitals dirty.

His idea runs counter to hundreds of years of scientific practice. Since a surgeon named Joseph Lister became the first to use antiseptic techniques in 1867 and save thousands of lives, modern medicine has worked tirelessly to create sterile medical environments — free of micro-organisms.

It all changed when Dr. Gilbert, associate director of the Institute for Genomic and Systems Biology at Argonne National Laboratory, began studying dolphins in 2014. He noticed that the animals were much healthier the “dirtier” the aquarium water was.

“We saw the benefit in increasing the microbial diversity of the home,” explained Gilbert. According to Dr. Gilbert, the lack of a rich microbial ecosystem, especially in our hospitals, might be causing more harm than good, leading to drug resistant strains of powerful superbugs and infection-causing viruses.

Science writer Ed Yong agrees with Dr. Gilbert, featuring him in his book, “I Contain Multitudes,”which tries to change our minds about bacteria. Yong points outs that “there are more bacteria in your gut than there are stars in our galaxy,” and of these fewer than 100 species of bacteria compromise our health. The rest, which coexist in and among us, aren’t just harmless — they protect us and make us who we are.

Every square inch of space contains billions of microbes— even seemingly desolate landscapes of Arctic ice or Saharan sand. Before humans, microbes were the only stuff of life on Earth.

Microbes, a microorganism almost always invisible to the naked eye, have spent 90 percent more time here than we have, invisibly evolving for millions of years. Instead of evolving alongside them, we joined forces with them in what scientists call “co-development.” We cannot live without the microbes we host.

Microbes not only impact the shape of many of our organs, they replace dying and damaged cells and help our bodies absorb and store nutrients and fat. Plants, animals and humans would die without these lifelong microbial hitchhikers.

Some animals begin developing with microbes from inception. Humans first make contact with theirs in the birth canal. From that moment forward, microbes help bolster our immune systems, helping our bodies learn to live with viral diseases that enter our bloodstream.

‘There are more bacteria in your gut than there are stars in our galaxy.’

 – Ed Yong, science writer, author of ‘I Contain Multitudes’

On its own, human milk is filled with a unique substance that for some reason, babies can’t digest without the help of the delicate microbiome they develop in their guts.

Pets in the household alter microbiomes even further, for both better and worse — although studies have shown that dogs, who come with their own set of allergy-suppressing microbes, are the most beneficial to a household’s microbial health, helping to strengthen the immune systems of its children.

In some cases, microbes are simultaneous deadly and healing. C. diff, an infectious illness caused by an imbalance of otherwise healthy bacteria attacking the lining of the small and large intestines, can cause death. The condition, unless treated early, will eat through the lining of the digestive tract.

Recently, a cure with a success rate of 94 percent during its test phase was found in a very unlikely place: the toilet. The treatment? A fecal transplant, where healthy donor stool is placed inside the gastrointestinal tract of C. diff sufferers to reestablish a healthy balance of bacteria in the gut. It now comes in pill form.

A trend that has passed less muster in the scientific community is the eating of live-culture yogurts and consuming probiotics as a way to balance our own microbiomes. Studies are showing simply consuming healthy bacteria isn’t the answer. The goal can’t just be adding microbes, it has to be finding a way to nurture and sustain them.

Enlarge Image
One of the earliest optical microscopes made for Joseph Jackson Lister, father of Joseph Lister (L), and a microscope that may be used today.Getty Images; Shutterstock

In 2008, a group of villagers believed to have spent 11,000 years in isolation, were spotted in a remote part of the Amazon rainforest. In 2015, scientists discovered that thousands of years of seclusion had left them with the most diverse microbiomes they had ever seen. Scientists concluded their microbial diversity was further proof that the battles waged against germs in the industrialized world had worked a little too well. Those of us living in modern cities, towns and villages had destroyed so much of the healthy microscopic life that belonged in our bodies, it had rendered our own microbiomes comparatively deficient.

This isn’t to say that pioneers of microbial research like Joseph Lister were wrong to employ hygienic practices. Incalculable lives have been saved thanks to antiseptics and antibiotics treatments.

However, the overuse of antibiotics and antiseptic cleaners is impacting our ability to maintain a balance of healthy microbes in our bodies and environments. Studies continue to prove that harmful species will exploit areas with too few good bacteria to fight back. Sterility should not be our goal.

As Yong writes, “A diverse ecosystem is better than an impoverished one.”

Originally posted:


8 Ways Microbes Can Save Us From Ourselves

microbesBy Sayer Ji

Could bacteria and related microbes, widely believed to be a primary cause of disease, explain how we are capable of surviving through the self-created chemical nightmare of industrialized society?

Environmental chemical exposures number in the tens of thousands among industrialized populations.  Our water, air, food, and now bodies, are saturated through with xenobiotic chemicals (compounds foreign to our biochemistry) most of which did not even exist on the planet before the industrial revolution of the late 19th century. The problem of their bioaccumulation is so severe that one autopsy study performed back in 1985 when things were arguably better, revealed that 48% of the livers and 46% of the spleens of the 465 autopsies analyzed showed signs of mineral-oil induced lipogranuloma.

Remarkably, our bodies are equipped with detoxification systems (such as the cytochrome P450 superfamily of enzymes), whose intelligent design makes it possible to degrade chemicals that did not even exist at the time in the distant past that these elaborate enzyme systems evolved – almost as if we were predesigned to be able to survive the burgeoning, geometrically expanding chemical onslaught of the past century.

Eventually, however, our elaborate and resilient detoxification systems become overloaded, which naturally leads to the emergence of acute and chronic diseases – diseases that the conventional medical establishment often pretends do not have an environmental origin, and therefore are treated by suppressing symptoms of poisoning with new, patented toxicants and biologicals known as pharmaceuticals. This approach has resulted in our becoming the sickest organism ever known to inhabit the Earth.

Thankfully, we are not alone. We have helpers all around and within us. Friendly bacteria (and beneficial yeast), with which we co-evolved, and have formed symbiotic alliances with, with cells numbering in the trillions. It has been proposed that our very definition of self should be updated to include these “others,” and that humans are truly a “meta-organism.”  This is no metaphor, because if you take away these bacteria, we die. Learn more on the topic by reading my essay How The Microbiome Destroyed the Ego, Vaccine Policy, and Patriarchy.

In order to bring this relationship into clearer focus, let us look at a few things these bacteria do for us, that we aren’t very good at doing for ourselves:

  • Perchlorate Toxicity – perchlorate is an ingredient in jet fuel and fireworks that widely contaminates the environment and our food. It is now found in disturbing concentrations in breast milk and urine, and is a well-known endocrine disrupter capable of blocking the iodine receptor in the thyroid, resulting in hypothyroidism and concomitant neurological dysfunction.  A recent study found that the beneficial bacterial strain known as Bifidobacterium Bifidum is capable of degrading perchlorate, and that breast fed infants appear to have lower levels than infant formula fed babies due to the breast milk bacteria’s ability to degrade perchlorate through the perchlorate reductase pathway.[i]
  • Pesticide Toxicity – Lactic acid bacteria strains isolated from the fermented cabbage dish known in Korean culture as kimchi were shown capable of degrading four different organophosphorous insecticides using these poisons as a source of carbon and phosphorus.[ii] [iii]
  • Vaccine-Toxicity – As we have documented in depth in the past, the unintended adverse health effects of vaccines often far exceed their purported benefits. This is especially true for so-called “attenuated” live vaccines, such as oral polio vaccine, which have recently been linked to tens of thousands of cases of childhood vaccine-induced paralysis in countries like India.  Oral Saccharomyces boulardii, a beneficial form of yeast, has been found in an animal model to prevent oral polio vaccine-induced IgA nephropathy, a form of immune-mediated kidney damage. [iv] Additionally, probiotic bacteria have been found to positively regulate the two poles of immunity (TH1/TH2), which vaccines often upset by inducing hypersensitization via over-activation of the adaptive/humoral (TH2) pole of immunity.[v]
  • Bisphenol-A Toxicity – Bisphenol A is an omnipresent petrochemically-derived toxicant with endocrine-disrupting properties. It has been shown to accumulate in the human body, and has been linked to a wide range of health problems. Bifidobacterium breve and Lactobacillus casei have been found in the animal model  to both reduce the intestinal absorption of BPA and facilitating its excretion.[vi]
  • Chemotherapy Toxicity – No chemical category is more fraught with life-threatening risks than chemotherapy – ironic, considering it is used to treat already terribly sick people.  Some chemo-agents, such as the nitrogen mustard class, are so toxic that they bear chemical weapons designations, and are banned by the Chemical Weapons Convention. There is evidence that the probiotic Bifidobacterium breve is capable of reducing the adverse effects on immune health induced by chemo-agents.[vii]
  • Aspirin Toxicity – Some chemicals we eat prophylactic ally, like aspirin, despite the fact that they cause small bowel injury and other serious adverse health effects. Even though aspirin’s adverse health effects far outweigh by number its purported health benefits, millions take it on a daily basis without full knowledge of how it is affecting them.  The bacteria known as Lactobacillus casei has been found to decrease the mucosal damage done by aspirin.[viii]
  • Sodium Nitrate Toxicity – Many foods today are preserved with nitrates, which may form DNA-damaging nitrosamines.  Lactic acid bacteria extracted from kimchi have been found to degrade sodium nitrate.[ix]
  • Gluten Toxicity – Wheat has increasingly been identified as a contributing factor in a wide range of health problems; research on 300 potential adverse health effects can be found in our Wheat Toxicity Database.  It has been known for some time that longer duration of breastfeeding (a plentiful source of probiotics) is associated with a delayed onset of celiac disease. It is possible that breast milk probiotics may have something to do with this.[x] Bifidobacteria may reduce the immuntoxic properties of gluten peptides by further degrading them into non-toxic peptides.[xi]  Interestingly, the oral cavity has recently been found to contain bacteria capable of degrading gluten, indicating there may be other gluten-degrading microorganisms within the upper gastro-intestinal tract, and that thoroughly chewing your food would reduce the potential antigenicity/immunotoxicity of wheat gluten peptides.[xii]

These are only a few examples of the health benefits of probiotics and related microbes, with special consideration towards reducing the adverse health effects of chemicals and toxins.  There are hundreds of additional health benefits of probiotics that we have indexed, now numbering over 200, with three dozen distinct beneficial mechanisms of action that have been characterized, e.g. anti-infective, anti-inflammatory, immunodulatory, etc.

To gain deeper insight into how the microbiome profoundly extends our genetic capabilities read my essay How The Microbiome Make Us “Supra Human.

Article sources:

Originally posted:

Cancer Therapy: Bacteria May Help Shrink Tumors

To find better ways to tackle cancer tumors that do not respond to traditional therapies, scientists are now experimenting with a modified bacterial strain that could target cancer cells without harming healthy ones. A phase I clinical trial reveals that this bacterial therapy shows promising effects.

A team at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston is now assessing the safety and usefulness of bacterial therapy for treating cancer tumors that don’t respond to other types of treatment.

The findings so far – recently presented at the CRI-CIMT-EATI-AACR International Cancer Immunotherapy Conference, held in New York City, NY – suggest that the therapy has manageable toxicity levels and can help shrink some resilient cancer tumors.

“Even after a single injection of this bacterial therapy, we see biological and, in some patients, clinically meaningful activity,” explains study co-author Dr. Filip Janku.

Cancer therapy

Next-gen solar cells use bacteria that convert light into energy

solarSolar power has a lot of benefits, but one big downside is the fact that places where it’s overcast more often than not can’t make the most of this clean power source. All that could be set to change, however, as scientists in often-cloudy British Columbia have found a way to use E. coli bacteria to convert light to energy.

As the building blocks that make up solar panels, solar cells covert light into an electrical current. “Biogenic” solar cells made using living organisms aren’t a new concept, but this novel iteration sets itself apart by producing a very powerful current. Best of all, it works just as well under dim light conditions as it does on a bright, sunny day. In these cells, the bacterium’s dye is excited by light to a point where it releases electrons that generate electricity.

The researchers say they were inspired by the dreary skies of British Columbia to find a more reliable way to supply clean energy as the Canadian province aims to become a leader in de-carbonized economies.

University of British Columbia Chemical and Biological Engineering Professor Vikramaditya Yadav, the study’s leader, said: “These hybrid materials that we are developing can be manufactured economically and sustainably, and, with sufficient optimization, could perform at comparable efficiencies as conventional solar cells.”

He estimated that the process could reduce the cost of producing dye to just one tenth of its normal cost. If they ultimately can’t match the strength of conventional cells, they could still prove tremendously useful in low-light settings like those found in deep sea exploration or mines.

Get more news like this without being censored: Get the Natural News app for your mobile devices. Enjoy uncensored news, lab test results, videos, podcasts and more. Bypass all the unfair censorship by Google, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Get your daily news and videos directly from the source! Download here.

Improving on past versions

In past attempts to create biogenic solar cells, scientists have tried to extract the natural dye used by bacteria for photosynthesis. This complex and costly endeavor uses toxic materials that could make the dye degrade, however. The Canadian researchers decided to try a different approach, leaving the dye inside the bacteria and inducing the organism to produce high amounts of lycopene. This dye, which can also be found in tomatoes and red fruits, is highly effective at harvesting light to convert into energy.

Next, they coated the bacteria using a semiconductor mineral and applied it to a glass surface. The coated glass at one of the cell served as an anode for the current to flow, and they managed to generate a current with an impressively high density. They were able to double the amount of electricity collected compared to other bacteria-based solar cells, although it still falls short of the amount needed to compete with traditional solar panels.

As promising as this sounds, there are still some obstacles to overcome. One of the biggest roadblocks is the fact that the bacteria die during the process. If the scientists can find a way to keep them alive, they can manufacture the cells more efficiently as the bacteria will be able to continue producing the dye indefinitely. They’d also like to fine tune the cells to try to get enough power out of them to give conventional solar cells a run for their money.

If they prove successful, the electricity used to run your home might one day be generated by bacteria.

Sources for this article include:

Originally posted:

One Way To Increase Your Beneficial Bacteria Without Any Food

By Karen Foster

It turns out that exercise can do more than slim down your waistline and boost heart health. It might also make what’s inside your gut healthier, according to a new study by San Francisco State University.

In this first-of-its-kind study, just published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, recent SF State graduate student Ryan Durk and Assistant Professor of Kinesiology Jimmy Bagley partnered with the SF State Health Equity Research (HER) Lab to test the relationship between gut health and cardiovascular fitness.

Durk (who received his master’s degree in kinesiology last December) recruited 20 men and 17 women, mostly from the SF State campus, and tested their cardiovascular fitness on a treadmill. He also assessed their body composition in the lab’s BOD POD, an air displacement chamber that determines a person’s fat and fat-free mass. Participants kept food logs for seven days and provided stool samples at the end of the week. The HER Lab then extracted DNA to analyze the bacteria composition in the samples. The researchers were investigating the ratio of bacteria called firmicutes to another group, bacteroides, which can be used to gauge overall gut health and composition.

Analysis showed that participants with the best cardiovascular fitness had a higher firmicutes to bacteroides ratio. While most gut bacteria can be beneficial (even bacteroides in some cases), firmicutes bacteria are associated with metabolic byproducts that help prevent bacteria in the gut from leaking into the body. “These metabolic byproducts help strengthen the intestinal lining and help prevent leaky gut syndrome,” said Durk. He says this research reinforces the idea of “exercise as medicine.”

“When we say that phrase, we think of it as meaning that exercise will help people stay healthier and live longer. But you don’t think about your gut bacteria,” Durk said. “We now know that exercise is crucial for increasing beneficial bacteria in the gut.”

According to Durk, findings from this study and other studies about the gut microbiome could eventually be used to create individual exercise prescriptions to improve gut — and overall — health. “We’re not there yet,” he said, “but this helps create that foundation.”

Also Read: The Most Natural Exercise In The World Cuts Cardiovascular Death By 50 Percent

Karen Foster writes for Prevent Disease, where this article first appeared.

Image credit: Pixabay

Originally posted:


Are we approaching a post-antibiotic future? Chemical medicine reaches “end game” terminal failure

BacteriaAs multi-drug resistance continues to spread throughout bacterial populations, we seem inexorably headed toward a future in which antibiotics cease to be of any use whatsoever, experts have warned.

Antibiotic resistance is a natural product of bacterial evolution. Throughout their history, many bacteria have evolved some degree of resistance to toxic chemicals in their environments, which include the defensive chemicals that other organisms produce against them — the very chemicals that antibiotics are based on. So, when a bacterial population is exposed to antibiotics, all the vulnerable organisms die, leaving only the drug-resistant ones to pass their genes on to the next generation.

But this process has been dramatically accelerated by irresponsible use of antibiotics to treat viral infections or non-dangerous bacterial infections, and particularly by the use of antibiotics as growth-promoters in livestock.

‘Nightmare bacteria’

The future was foreshadowed by a shocking case in August, of a 70-year old woman who was admitted to a Reno hospital suffering septic shock from an infection of Klebsiella pneumoniae. After she died from the infection — which failed to respond to antibiotic treatment — samples of the bacteria were sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for analysis.

Researchers found that the strain of K. pneumoniae was resistant to all 26 antibiotics approved for human use in the United States, including the “drug of last resort,” colistin.

K. pneumoniae is naturally present in the gut, and typically only causes infection in people who are weakened by injury or disease, such as hospital patients. The woman had initially acquired the infection while hospitalized for a broken leg in India. Thus, the “nightmare bacteria,” as the CDC calls it, does not appear to be endemic to the United States — yet.

“The ease of global travel does mean that such cases will increase,” said David Brown, chief scientist at Antibiotic Research UK.

The end of modern medicine

The post-antibiotic future may arrive faster than anyone expected, for one simple reason: All antibiotics are derived from only a handful of separate chemical types. And once bacteria develop resistance to one drug, that resistance rapidly generalizes to every drug in the same class.

Additionally, pharmaceutical companies have largely abandoned research into new antibiotics due to low profit margins.

But, ultimately, even the development of new drugs would only slow the end of antibiotic-based medicine. Experts warn that only widespread changes in antibiotic use, including an end to routine use in animal agriculture, can truly stop the problem.

In 2015, World Health Organization head, Margaret Chan, warned that without these changes, we will enter “a post-antibiotic era, in which common infections will once again kill.”

This era will likely arrive within the lifetimes of many people who are alive today. According to projections by the British government’s Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, by 2050, superbugs will be killing 10 million people per year, more than the deaths from cancer and diabetes combined. That is 10 times the number being killed by these infections today. In some countries, such as Nigeria, it is predicted that superbugs will be responsible for a quarter of all deaths by that same year.

Notably, these numbers count deaths from only six drug-resistant pathogens (though not all of them are bacteria): K. pneumoniae, E. coli, MRSA, HIV, TB and malaria.

A post-antibiotic world will not just mean that people will die from infections that can now be treated. It will mean that many now-routine medical procedures will become impossible — including all surgeries, cancer treatments and organ transplants. The deaths caused by the loss of these medical treatments are also not included in the 10 million per year figure.

In Chan’s words, the loss of effective antibiotics will “mean the end of modern medicine as we know it.” (RELATED: See for breaking new on modern medicine’s failures and achievements.)

Sources for this article include:

Originally Posted:


Mother Speaks Out On Antibiotic Resistance After Child Taken By MRSA Superbug

image-kid-antibiotic-resistance-735-350Antibiotic drug resistance has become a huge issue, so much so that world leaders passed a declaration aimed at slowing the spread of antibiotic-resistant superbugs, calling it “historical” and “a turning point.”And while most of us have heard about these so-called superbugs, not everyone is aware of how quickly it can take away a life. That’s why Everly Macario is telling her story about her son’s life being taken by an antibiotic resistant strain of MRSA.

Macario’s healthy 1-year-old, Simon Sparrow, went from having a routine strep infection to dying within just 24 hours after developing an antibiotic resistant strain of MRSA.

“It’s a parent’s worst nightmare,” Macario says of the 2004 incident. [1]

Young Simon was up-to-date on all of his vaccines and had no underlying health issues, which is what partially stunned his parents. The boy was recovering from strep throat, which made it hard for him to breathe. But his parents, Jim Sparrow and Macario, began to become worried when Simon still wasn’t acting himself after a couple of days.

As a precautionary measure, they took him to their local emergency room, but they were told to go home, even though Simon’s father remarked that his son’s lips had taken on a bluish hue.

But their son wasn’t getting any better. Macario says that at one point, she touched her son’s face and it was ice-cold. It was then that she called an ambulance where he was rushed back to the hospital.

She says of the incident:

“When we arrived in the emergency room, suddenly it was an onslaught of medical people that just surrounded Simon, and I’m not really sure how they knew this exactly, but they kept repeating, ‘your son is very, very sick, your son is very, very sick’.” [2]

Read: It’s Here – Bacteria Resistant to ALL Antibiotics Shows up in U.S.

Her son was put on a heart and lung machine, but passed away shortly thereafter. At the time, there was no immediate cause of death, so his parents agreed for an autopsy to be performed. The results stated that little Simon had died from a strain of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).


Because of her son’s death, Macario is now an advocate with the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and hopes to make every parent aware of these unfortunate possible outcomes.

The United Nations and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) are now working to create a better approach to curb antibiotic resistance so that stories like Simon’s are not repeated.


[1] NBC News

[2] Today

Originally Posted:

Drug-Resistant Bacteria Found In A 4th Person In The U.S.

A 4th case of a superbug that is resistant to antibiotics of last resort has been reported in aConnecticut toddler, and health officials are scrambling to figure out where else the superbugs might be lurking.

Antibiotic resistance first popped up in the U.S. this past May, when it was discovered that a Pennsylvania woman was harboring a resistant form of E. coli. On 9 September 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that drug-resistant E. coli had also been discovered in a two-year-old girl in Connecticut. [1]

In both cases, the bacteria were found to be carrying mcr-1, a gene that makes bacteria resistant to antibiotics.

Mcr-1 allows the organism to withstand colistin, the antibiotic doctors turn to when all others have failed. [2]

In the Connecticut case, the E. coli strain was resistant to colistin but was susceptible to other antibiotics, according to the CDC report. The child fully recovered, and the bacteria did not spread to any of the girl’s family members or to the healthcare providers she came in contact with.

But the case was startling enough that officials said toexpect more cases like the toddler’s, and recommended increased surveillance for bacteria that show resistance to colistin.

Details Of The Connecticut Case

The toddler had traveled with her family to the Caribbean for about two weeks to visit friends and relatives. During her visit, she ate chicken and goat meat from a live animal market, and developed fever and bloody diarrhea on June 12, two days before returning to the United States.

Upon her return home, doctors collected stool samples from the child, including one from a soiled diaper. An investigation by state and federal health officials determined it wasn’t the strain of E. coli that made her sick. However, the bacteria were discovered to be carrying the mcr-1 gene.

Alexander Kallen, a CDC medical officer who investigates antibiotic resistance, said “It was completely an incidental finding.”

The History Of Mcr-1

Source: The Sun

I’ve been following the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria for nearly a year now. It first popped up in China in November 2015. Experts warned then that the world might soon be coping with a serious superbug problem, and predicted that medicine could very well return to the Dark Ages.

From there, the mcr-1 gene showed up in bacteria in Denmark, followed by the United Kingdom. Experts thought it would take about a decade for antibiotic-resistant bacteria to reach England’s shores, but it took mere months.

Health officials in Canada announced in January 2016 that antibiotic-resistant bugs had been discovered in that country in old samples dating back to 2010 and 2011. That finding was especially alarming because it indicated that the bacteria had been in North America much longer than anyone realized.

The resistance gene was also found in an E. coli strain in a 76-year-old New Jersey man dating back to August 2014, Rutgers University scientists reported last month, leading to the same conclusion.

In the case of the Pennsylvania woman, health officials in that state contacted everyone who had been near the infected patient, but none of them had any known risk factors for mcr-1.

Kelly Kline of the Pennsylvania Department of Health and colleagues wrote:

“It is not known how the patient became colonized, especially in the absence of an epidemiologic link to known persons or places with identified mcr-1.

The patient had no international travel for approximately one year, no livestock exposure and a limited role in meal preparation with store-bought groceries; however, she had multiple and repeated admissions to four medical facilities during 2016.” [1]

Health care personnel from two high-risk facilities where the Pennsylvania woman was treated were tested, plus 20 people who had high-risk contact, including a hospital roommate, family and friends, and nurses who bathed her. No bacteria with the mcr-1 gene were detected among the 105 persons screened.

Like the Connecticut patient, the Pennsylvania patient didn’t appear to have been sickened by E. coli. She had other infections and wasn’t treated for the E. coli infection. When a person carries bacteria that don’t sicken them, it’s called “colonization.”

On August 1, the patient tested negative for the mcr-1 carrying gene.


Where We’re Headed

What makes mcr-1 so frightening is the fact that it’s found on a plasmid, meaning that it can affect many different kinds of bacteria.

The worst-case scenario – the thought that keeps researchers and health officials up at night – is that the mcr-1 gene will spread to another superbug with other mutations. The result would be asuper-superbug invincible to every life-saving antibiotic on the planet.

In the United States, colistin is not typically used to treat humans, nor is it used in livestock. However, colistin use among farm animals is widespread in other countries, particularly China, which is the primary reason bacteria are becoming resistant to it.

The world needs new antibiotics, but antibiotics aren’t money-makers for drug companies.


[1] NBC News

[2] The Washington Post

The Sun


Big Pharma’s death machine to unleash massive killer superbugs across the globe… 10 million people a year to be killed by 2050

Blue-Virus-Bacteria-3d-ModelHuman resistance to antibiotics will continue to worsen, and will eventually become “an even greater threat to mankind than cancer,” if no action is taken to reverse the trend, Chancellor George Osborne, a British Conservative Party politician who has been Chancellor of the Exchequer since 2010 and parliamentarian since 2001, has warned.

As reported by the UK’s Independent, Osborne says the latest evidence indicates that as many as 10 million people a year could die around the world by 2050, as antibiotics become increasingly ineffective against common bacterial infections due to overuse today – more people than currently die from cancer, which death rate figure is high as well, according to the PharmaDeathClock.

In a speech to delegates at the International Monetary Fund meeting in Washington, D.C., Osborne said that the resistance will take a massive economic toll as well: By 2050, antibiotics resistance could reduce global gross domestic product by as much as 3.5 percent, or about $100 trillion (£70 trillion).

‘An economic problem too’

“Unless we take global action, antimicrobial resistance will become an even greater threat to mankind than cancer currently is,” he said in his speech.

“It is not just a health problem but an economic one, too. The cost of doing nothing, both in terms of lives lost and money wasted, is too great, and the world needs to come together to agree a common approach,” Osborne added.

“We have to dramatically shift incentives for pharmaceutical companies and others to create a long-term solution to this problem, with new rewards, funded globally, that support the development of new antibiotics and ensure access to antibiotics in the developing world.

“To achieve a long-term solution we also need better rapid diagnostics that will cut the vast amounts of unnecessary antibiotic use,” he continued.

In 2014, the British government was the first in the G-20 group of wealthy nations to speak out publicly about how bad the threat is becoming, The Independent reported. The prime minister’s office asked the Treasury minister and economist, Lord O’Neill, to develop a plan to deal with the problem of global resistance to antibiotics.

The United Kingdom has already implemented a pair of those recommendations: Boosting government funding for early-stage research, and to help build capabilities for monitoring of the development and spread of drug resistance in low-income settings.

Osborne is expected to support a proposal from O’Neill and others to create “market entry rewards” that pay a large sum of prize money, in essence, to a pharmaceutical company or group of companies to create a new antibiotic for the market – something that seems absurd, given that Big Pharma and the modern medical system is at fault to begin with.

Problem has been getting worse for some time

As NaturalNews has reported, resistance to common antibiotics has been a growing problem for some time. Already, drug-resistant infections kill some 700,000 people globally each year. And while antibiotics helped defeat once-common and deadly bacterial infections like tuberculosis and strep throat last century, their overuse has led to the development of several strains of resistant bacteria today.

“Antibiotics have become less effective because of massive over-prescribing by the healthcare industry. Common illnesses are beginning to become resistant to basic antibiotic treatments. Patients with staph infections of the skin, for instance, can no longer be treated with traditional oral antibiotics, like penicillin, in wake of a resistant bacteria, or suberbug, known as MRSA,” wrote S. Johnson of Natural News.

What’s more, the manner in which these resistant bugs are spreading is alarming. For instance, Newsmax Health has noted that hospitals can spread dangerous, resistant superbugs through the use of detergent wet wipes.

Rather than clean surfaces, researchers found that the wipes really just spread potentially deadly bacteria from one surface to the next.



Learn more:

Author: J. D. Heyes