How do you prevent development of antibiotic resistance when suffering from tuberculosis?

Tuberculosis bacilli grow slowly, and grow inside human cells[1] . Slow growth tends to make bacteria intrinsically less susceptible to antibiotics, and being inside a host cell makes it more difficult to achieve a high, therapeutically-effective dose of an antibiotic. To add to the challenge, resistance to some of the most effective anti-TB antibiotics (like rifampin) Read More …

What would the CDC or the government do if there was a massive outbreak of an antibiotic-resistant disease?

If there was indeed a massive outbreak of antibiotic resistant bacterial infections, the government and CDC would do little or nothing. Why? Because they no longer function in any recognizable form. A severe outbreak of bacterial disease could only happen if these institutions have collapsed. Antibiotics are not critical to keeping society safe from bacterial Read More …

Can we evolve to be immune to diseases?

We can and we do evolve immunities to specific diseases. Tuberculosis is a good example. In the 17th-19th centuries it was often the largest single cause of death among Europeans, particularly in cities[1] . What’s more, it was a disease of young adults, with most victims being in their 20s and early 30s. TB exerted Read More …

What are some potential epidemics that nobody is talking about, as of 2016?

From a North American perspective, the threat of tuberculosis is grossly underappreciated. TB was rampant in the US in the 18th and 19th centuries, and was typically among the top three killers of the population at large – estimates range as high as 1% of the population per year [1] . TB began a steep Read More …