Health Watch — Bacteria: Finding New Weapons

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications  and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about bacteria, especially the kind that come with the food we eat. One challenge in fighting bacteria is that the bacteria are getting smarter and stronger, developing resistance to the antibiotics we use to fight them. Because of this, doctors are having to develop new antibiotics.

Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center are among those working to find new ways to fight bacteria such as  Salmonella and E coli. A grant from the National Institutes of Health will fund ongoing research into new approaches to target harmful bacteria. Dr. Michael Norgard, UT Southwestern’s chairman of microbiology, says the goal is to produce an entirely new kind of anti-microbial compound that bacteria won’t have developed any kind of resistance or immunity to because it targets different aspects of the bacteria.

Next: The unique approach to fighting bacteria.


October 2008

Health Watch is heard Monday through Friday nationwide on ABC Satellite Radio. Call your local radio station and ask if they carry the program.