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The Evolution Of Cell Types: Evolution of a Menace Coursework

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Updated: Jun 12th, 2022

The case study describes the mechanisms behind the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria. The generation of drug-resistant bacteria has arisen from the selection of genes that have been mutated through time and have rendered these strains to be insensitive to current antibiotics that are being prescribed by physicians to their patients. The case study also described that the environment itself carries drug resistant bacteria that have originated from the administration of excessive antibiotics to both humans and animals.

Scientific terms

  • Natural selection – The mechanism of transferring favorable genetic features to the offspring is known as natural selection. Favorable genetic features are often associated with the appearance or characteristics of a species, making them more robust to survive in our changing environment (Parrish 458).
  • Antibiotic resistance – The capability of a bacterial species to survive the impact of the administration of chemicals that are designed to induce death is known as antibiotic resistance. It has been determined that antibiotic resistance has arisen through the process of natural selection (Gould 3). However, antibiotic resistance can also be induced in the laboratory through genetic manipulation.
  • Resistance allele – A gene is generally represented by two forms which are called alleles. In the case of a resistance allele, this gene form has accumulated mutations that make it different from the normal allele and has therefore acquired is insensitivity to the effects of a particular antibiotic (Macgowan 106)
  • Susceptible bacteria – Any bacterial strain that carries a normal allelic form of a specific gene is said to be susceptible because it is sensitive to the effect of a particular antibiotic. This bacterial strain is the exact opposite in reaction to resistant bacteria (Sipahi 530).
  • Evolutionary biology – The specialized field that is involved with the study of descent of organisms through time is known as evolutionary biology. This field of biology aims to determine how related at least two species are to or from each other, through the use of features that may be morphological, genetic or ecological, or even a combination of several biological areas (Arendt 870)

An alternative to antibiotic use could be the administration of vitamins that would help the patient in overcoming a bacterial infection. For example, a simple cough may be treated with drinking lots of fluids supplemented with vitamin C, which is known as a good free radical scavenger that collects any oxygen free radicals that could have been generated by the bacteria present in the body of patient.

It should also be understood that bacterial infections do not last forever unless they are extremely robust or resistant to vitamin supplementation. Once the bacteria have noticed that there is not enough nutrients present in the body of the patient, the bacteria itself will stop dividing and will eventually die. In addition, sore throat can also be treated with a gargle solution that contains salt. It is known that bacteria do not survive high salt concentrations hence if a patient salt-containing gargle solution several times a day when the symptoms of sore throat are still present, the bacteria will be eradicated and this prevents chances of generating drug-resistant bacteria.

Works cited

Arendt D. “The Evolution Of Cell Types In Animals: Emerging Principles From Molecular Studies.” Nature Reviews Genetics, 9(2008):868-882.

Gould IM. “Who’s Winning The War?” Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 62(2008):3-6.

Macgowan AP; BSAC Working Parties on Resistance Surveillance. “Clinical Implications Of Antimicrobial Resistance For Therapy.” Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 62(2008):105-114.

Parrish CR, Holmes EC, Morens DM, Park EC, Burke DS, Calisher CH, Laughlin CA, Saif LJ, Daszak P. “Cross-species Virus Transmission And The Emergence Of New Epidemic Diseases.” Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews. 72(2008):457-70.

Sipahi OR. “Economics Of Antibiotic Resistance.” Expert Reviews in Antibiotics and Infection Therapy, 6 (2008):523-539.

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