10 April 2019, News from Healthcare Technologies Institute, University of Birmingham
Antibiotic resistance occurs when the bacteria mutate and develop the ability to defeat the drugs and chemicals designed to cure infections, causing treatments to lose their effectiveness.
Since the 1980s, no new classes of antibiotics have been invented. With no new discoveries of traditional antibiotics, we are eventually going to face a time when even minor injuries and routine operations, such as hip replacements and pacemakers, can become too dangerous due to the high risk of infection. By 2050 antibiotic resistance is predicted to kill more people annually than cancer.
Researchers at the University of Birmingham are studying how an age-old natural sweetener, honey, can be developed to combat antibiotic resistance.
Honey possesses reactive oxygen species which are natural antibiotics that destroy bacteria and are naturally produced by the body to fight infection. Ancient Egyptians used it for its natural anti-microbial properties to treat skin diseases and protect wounds from infection, and even to embalm their dead.
The UK research team is working on how to effectively deliver honey to different parts of the body and how to use it on wounds using a spray, cream and powder in surgeries, war zones and homes. Currently the liquid is found to be too sticky for accurate application and dosage. However, so far, their research has shown promising evidence that bacteria do not develop a resistance to honey and that honey is proven to be an effective killer of superbugs such as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
News Source: Honey, the magic antibiotic.
1. How could honey treat cuts, burns, insect bites, eczema and psoriasis, and fungal infections? All in: The Tastiest 100% Natural Antibiotic - Honey
2. How honey fights infections and heals? Find out in: How Honey Fights Infection.
3. What makes honey a superfood and a popular medicine. Read: 3 Key Valuable Honey Properties