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Prof. Austin, researcher into seaweed antibiotic

Prof. Austin, researcher into seaweed antibiotic

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Credit

JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Brian Austin. British biologist Professor Brian Austin, who has identified a new antibiotic from seaweed that kills resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. He holds two petri dish cultures of bacteria. At left is the deadly MRSA bacterium (Myocillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) that is resistant to all other agents. At right is an antidote to MRSA obtained from Fucus sp. seaweed. This antidote is not seaweed itself but a bacteria (Planococcus sp.) from the seaweed which produces a new antibiotic chemical. Tests show MRSA, which infects wounds in hospital patients, is killed by this natural seaweed agent. Research conducted at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland.

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