Antibiotic Resistance

Topics: Bacteria, Antibiotic resistance, Gene Pages: 2 (426 words) Published: February 28, 2013
Merrill La (24)
Antibiotic resistance may be defined as the ability of a microbial organism to sustain, survive, and reproduce even in the presence of an antimicrobial compound. By acquiring resistant genes through horizontal gene transfer from other bacteria or mutations, a bacterium may attain resistance to certain antibiotics. Once the bacterium has acquired the resistant genes, there are able to synthesize required enzyme that would in turn render the antibiotic ineffective. In other word, the bacterium would express “efflux systems” that would impede with the pharmacological effect of the antibiotic by preventing it from coming in contact with its intracellular target, changing the conformation if the drug’s target site, or synthesizing an alternate pathway that would bypass and circumvent the action of the drug. (1) An alternate way in which bacteria may attain antibiotic resistance is through acquisition of additional genetic material from disparate resistant organism. The process in which a bacteria’s genetic knowledge migrate from one microbial organism to another is called horizontal gene transfer. Horizontal gene transfer may occur in three different ways: transduction, conjugation, and transformation. Even though there has been increasing cases of antibiotic resistance, there are ways to minimize it. A patient is able to minimize chances of carrying antibiotic resistance bacteria by taking his or her antibiotics as prescribed by their physicians, taking antibiotics to treat only bacterial infections, and taking multiple antibiotics with various mode of action. Researchers are also developing new antibiotics as time progresses. (2) DISCUSSION

The two methodologies in which antibiotic-resistant bacteria may be transferred to humans from animals are through consumption of contaminated food and direct contact of bodily fluids. Many problems have risen with the constant use and dependency of antibiotics. With an exponentially growing...
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