Gram Positive And Gram-Negative Bacteria

1370 Words 6 Pages
In an effort to defend themselves, many organisms in the macroscopic world have developed lightning-fast reflexes, sharp claws, or clenchable fists. Animals use their adaptations to help them survive in nature. In the microscopic world, however, organisms such as bacteria and fungi do not have the ability to ward off enemies with brute force, so they have to produce chemical defenses. In the case of fungi, specifically the Penicillium genus, their chemical defenses are against bacteria, in the form of antibiotics. In the early 20th century, scientists adapted these chemicals into antibiotics for human consumption (Wennergren 141). Since then, antibiotic use has grown tremendously, and they are now being used to treat bacterial infections in …show more content…
Some species are inherently resistant, while others acquire resistance to certain antibiotics later in their lives. All bacteria fall into one of two categories: Gram-positive and Gram-negative. This Gram-status is referring to a thick layer of peptidoglycan between their cell membranes. Species with the layer are designated Gram-positive and those without are Gram-negative (Dakora). Gram-positive bacteria containing the peptidoglycan layer are intrinsically less resistant to some types of antibiotics than Gram-negative bacteria without it (Dakora). Additionally, some species of bacteria simply have fewer sites on their cell membranes that allow antibiotics to pass through. As a result, they are more resistant to antibiotics with certain chemical signatures (Dakora). Bacteria are able to increase their resistance gradually over a span of only a few generations through the process of natural selection. The time it takes to adapt to antibiotics increases the longer they are used …show more content…
Once-life-threatening infections were now curable with just a simple treatment of antibiotics. However, our reliance on them and other antimicrobials for everything from medicine to food safety to making sure our hands stay clean after grabbing a door handle is steadily strengthening the bacteria they aim to destroy. As a result, harmless bacteria found in common places may be transformed into harmful superbugs the likes of which cannot be stopped by current antibiotics. And at the rate new antibiotics are discovered, things look more and more bleak every time a new superbug is discovered. Scientists simply cannot keep up with

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