Life Science, S&F 2: Body Systems (HS), S&F 3: Body Systems (MS), Structure and Function

Using Microbes to Fight Microbes

Microbial approaches for targeting antibiotic-resistant bacteria

SUMMARY: Aside from phage therapy, another way to fight antibiotic resistant bacteria is by focusing on the gut microbiome. This article talks about targeting resistant bacteria via phages, stopping the growth and spread of resistant bacteria by recovering the normal gut microbiome of the person, and possibly using other bacteria to hunt down antibiotic resistant bacteria. Fecal transplants are also mentioned at the end of this article and is an interesting option in both bringing back a healthy gut biome and preventing resistant bacteria growth.

LESSON COMMENTS: This article is not very difficult for high school students to understand, but they will need to be familiar with: what the gut microbiome is, how bacteria compete, colonize and grow (what I call gut real estate), phage therapy, and what fecal transplants are.
This can also be an interesting topic for environmental science students, comparing and contrasting pond ecosystems (macro-ecosystems) and micro-ecosystems such as the one in our large intestine.

Wong, W. F., & Santiago, M. (2017). Microbial approaches for targeting antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Microbial Biotechnology,10(5), 1047-1053. doi:10.1111/1751-7915.12783