Could phage therapy help combat antimicrobial resistance?

Source: The post is based on the article “Could phage therapy help combat antimicrobial resistance?” published in The Economist on 8th June 2023

What is the News?

A study conducted by the University of Exeter shows that the public is aware of and accepts the use of bacteria-killing viruses, known as phage therapy, as an alternative to antibiotics.

What is Phage therapy?

It is a treatment approach that uses bacteriophages, which are viruses that infect and kill specific bacteria. The method involves using these viruses to target and destroy bacterial infections, serving as an alternative to antibiotics.

Advantages: Phages are highly specific in their action, targeting only the specific bacteria they are programmed to attack. This can potentially reduce the risk of antibiotic resistance. So, phage therapy is considered as a potential solution for antibiotic-resistant infections. Further, the patients often have minimal side effects.

Must read: Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR): Causes, Concerns and Remedies – Explained, pointwise

What are Bacteriophages?

These are viruses that infect bacteria and use them as hosts for their replication. They are highly diverse and can target different types of bacteria.

Must read: Anti-microbial resistance is an impending health catastrophe and requires a multi-disciplinary approach and investment in R&D.
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