Antibiotics May Accelerate Bacteria Growth
According to a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Exeter in the UK, bacterial growth can be stimulated by antibiotics. Although the results of this study were expected, scientists were surprised to discover that the bacteria reproduced even faster following exposure to antibiotics.
For the study, researchers exposed E. coli (Escherichia coli) bacteria to eight rounds of antibiotic treatment over four days. E. coli infection can cause severe stomach pain and diarrhea and lead to kidney failure. With each treatment, the bacteria showed increased resistance, reproduced faster, and formed populations that were three times larger. When the antibiotics were removed, the newly developed characteristics in the bacteria remained.
This study demonstrates the importance of using the correct antibiotic as soon as possible in patients with E. coli. Doing so may help prevent the dangerous adaptations observed in this study.
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