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A new enzyme (NDM-1) has been found in some bugs brought back to the UK by people who went to India and Pakistan for hospital procedures. The enzyme makes these microbes resistant to yet another type of abx (carbapenems, the last of the beta lactams that can beat bugs with beta lactamase). NDM-1 has been found in E.coli and they're worried that other microbes may gain this capacity because of the way that bacteria trade DNA (plamids). There are only 50 known cases in the UK but docs are worried. The future for the treatment of infections may not be antibiotic drugs. We may end up using naturopathic methods of increasing immune resistance, or perhaps even the introduction of bacteriophages. I would love to see phages investigated further but as long as antibiotics are the standard of practice for infections, nobody's got the time or money to investigate it. Except the Russians. They are all over a good idea.

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