TECH

Fight Diseases Using Alligators And Frogs Instead Of Antibiotics

28/05/2015 17:01 BST | Updated 28/05/2015 17:59 BST

On 2 June microbiologists will be discussing how crocodiles, frogs and snakes can help us fight infections.

Antibiotics are of course, so 20th century since we're all growing more resistant to them.

alligator

The next best solution is to look at animals such as crocs that have a better immune system than ours.

Scientists have already discovered that one of the most precious molecules that the croc can offer us in terms of our fight against bacteria are its peptides -- the stuff proteins are made of.

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These predatory peptides are also found in frogs and cobras and have already been proven to work in healing wounds in mice.

One particular peptide called pexiganan sourced from frog skin, is already being clinically trialled to treat diabetic foot ulcers.

The main barrier to producing these molecules is cost.

Other antibiotic alternatives that will be explored at the American Society For Microbiology's meet in June include predatory bacteria.

One species known as Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus, which is found in the soil is particularly lethal in its attack as it embeds itself in the inner and outer membranes of the prey bacteria's cell until it explodes. Brutal.

It's this brutality however, that makes these molecules and bacteria the most desirable solution to our growing antibiotic resistance.