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Antibiotics, biocidal and biostatic.

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Chris McManus Antibiotics Antibiotics are split into two separate groups, biocidal and biostatic. Biocidal antibiotics simply destroy their target whereas biostatic antibiotics inhibit the growth of particular bacteria and their reproduction, this enable the human immune system to overcome the infectious bacteria. The one thing that all types of antibiotic have in common is in their definition, which is that they all are produced from microorganisms usually in the form of bacteria or fungi. Although this is now being complicated because chemists can alter the structure of naturally found bacteria to increase its effectiveness. What's more is that bacteria destroying compounds can be found in certain plants, insects and amphibians. ...read more.


There are four many ways in which antibiotics can interfere with bacterial cells, cell wall synthesis, protein synthesis, nucleic acid synthesis and cell membrane synthesis. Cell Wall Synthesis- "Penicillin, cephalosporin and vancomycin all interfere with the making of bonds that strengthen bacterial cell wall."2 The cell walls of bacterial cells are different to those of human and plant cells. Bacteria contain long, linear polymers called peptidoglycans. These antibiotics listed above inhibit the growth and assembly of the peptide cross links, which go towards the make up of peptidoglycans, this results in the wall of these cells being weak and causing the bacterium to eventually explode. ...read more.


Nucleic Acid Synthesis- Anthracyclines are antibiotics that interfere with nucleic acid synthesis. As mentioned in protein synthesis there is hardly any difference between these processes in bacteria and mammals but the slight difference is all that is needed for theses antibiotics to work on only the bacteria cells. Anthracyclines inhibit DNA synthesis in all organisms, which is useful in destroying cancer cells but always have serious side effects such as damage of hair follicle cells and gut cells. Cell Membrane Function- Amphotercin B is an antibiotic, which affects the cell membrane of bacteria cells. The antibiotic distorts the lipid bilayer of the cell in turn causes the contents to leak out, ultimately destroying the cell. The process is becoming ever more popular with newly discovered antibiotics. 1 Biological Sciences Review, May 1999, Pg 18 2 Biological Sciences Review, May 1999, Pg 19 ...read more.

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