Bye Bye Anti-bacterial Additives

The FDA is making the anti-bacterial add-ins in soaps an cleaning supplies go away. You can read about that from them here or from a National Public Radio article here.

I say it’s about time.

For short term financial gain to ease consumers’ worries and pain we’re all paying the price. The price is in accelerating the rise of strains of bacteria resistant to medications.

But what’s wrong with killing bugs? you ask.

Well all we are really doing is replacing bugs we have some ability to fight with bugs we cannot fight. So we become trapped in a vicious cycle of developing new biocidal agents to counter the bugs that have adapted to our old biocides. And along the way we pollute the environment, and indirectly our food supply, with anti-bacterial agents that have a host of knock-on effects we cannot control.

As I mentioned in a previous post, It’s About Time,  bacteria benefit from lateral gene transfer and quick generational turnover. So they adapt to our anti-bacterial tools quickly,very quickly.

If you don’t believe me just watch the timelapse video below. It shows E-Coli adapting to an anti-bacterial agent and then taking over successively more and more toxic spaces until, after 11 days, it can thrive in 1000 times the dosage originally required to kill it. This is from Harvard

 

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