microbiological

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BIG UPDATE!

I’ve finally finished my biological patches set! After many months of designing, editing, and trial and error, I’m proud to post up photos of the final products!

They are woven with bright, beautiful colors that will endure many washes and adventures to come. They’re only $8 in my store:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/Monsternium



Here are the first five patches in my biological patch set. Once all ten are made, the rainbow of studies will be complete! Each one is illustrated, digitized, and embroidered by me. Stay tuned for more! Next up is herpetology ;)

Penicillin

Penicillin is a widely used antibiotic prescribed to treat staphylococci and streptococci bacterial infections. 

  • beta-lactam family 
  • Gram-positive bacteria = thick cell walls containing high levels of peptidoglycan
  • gram-negative bacteria = thinner cell walls with low levels of peptidoglycan and surrounded by a lipopolysaccharide (LPS) layer that prevents antibiotic entry 
  • penicillin is most effective against gram-positive bacteria where DD-transpeptidase activity is highest.

Examples of penicillins include:

  • amoxicillin
  • ampicillin
  • bacampicillin
  • oxacillin
  • penicillin

Mechanism(s)

  • Penicillin inhibits the bacterial enzyme transpeptidase, responsible for catalysing the final peptidoglycan crosslinking stage of bacterial cell wall synthesis.
  • Cells wall is weakened and cells swell as water enters and then burst (lysis)
  • Becomes permanently covalently bonded to the enzymes’s active site (irreversible)

Alternative theory: penicillin mimics D-Ala D-Ala

Or may act as an umbrella inhibitor

Resistance

  • production of beta-lactamase - destroys the beta-lactam ring of penicillin and makes it ineffective (eg Staphylococcus aureus - most are now resistant)
  • In response, synthetic penicillin that is resistant to beta-lactamase is in use including egdicloxacillin, oxacillin, nafcillin, and methicillin. 
  • Some is resistant to methicillin - methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).  
  • Demonstrating blanket resistance to all beta-lactam antibiotics -extremely serious health risk.
Finish Your Antibiotics

I’m sorry, this isn’t Jojo at all but I think I’ve had it for today. As a pharmacy tech, I’m tired of hearing “Well, I started to feel better so I didn’t finish them.” I always knew this but now as a Molecular and Cellular Biology major, I not only know why but how. If you’re willing to heed my advice from the title, good; be on your way. If you need to know more, keep reading.

It’s widely known–to some extent–that not completing a regiment of antibiotics can result in resistant bacteria, or even super bacteria.

But in an infection, you already have resistant bacteria lurking. Not taking antibiotics doesn’t literally create resistant bacteria. So how, then, do the antibiotics take care of the resistant ones?

A lot of antibiotics aren’t bacterialcidal: They don’t actually kill them. Many inhibit growth by some mechanism depending if the bacteria is gram negative or gram positive. For example, penicillin inhibits growth by disrupting the formation of a peptidoglycan layer on gram positive bacteria. Others target the LPS layer on gram negative ones. This keeps the non resistant bacteria at bay. So what kills the resistant ones? Your immune system. Antibiotics buy time and energy for your immune system to recognize and destroy the resistant strains. Your immune system is intelligent in that sense and can form antibodies for new illnesses. It’s important to give your immune system this time because bacteria grow, mutate, and transfer genetic material at astonishing rates. If you wanted to look at a microcosm of the mechanics that go into evolution, you’ve got it with bacteria. 

There are three methods aside from binary fission in which they transfer genes (I won’t get into the minutia of the form of informational material): Transformation, transduction and conjugation.

In transformation, a bacteria can pickup lost genes from a ruptured and dead cell.

Transduction is a way to transfer information via a viral vector.

In conjugation, genes are transferred through something called a pilus: It’s a bridge between two cells that pipes a copy of the information from one cell to another receptive cell and is the only method that doesn’t involve killing either cells. Resistant bacteria like to give around that resistance information like they’re burning a CD for their friends.

So please finish your antibiotics if you’ve been given them. It doesn’t matter if you’ve started to feel better or even great. Finish them.

(Hey science people, If I’ve missed anything or even got something wrong, help me out. There’s obviously lengthy stuff I’ve left out but I think I got the basics).

4

( 1 8 . 0 6 . 1 7 ) 🎧 to find you - sing street

june study challenge day 18: today is father’s day in the u.s.! describe your dad or another male role model that has helped you in your academic life. my dad’s a food chemist, so between him and my mother’s microbiology work i literally grew up inside labs and we lived inside the campus itself. he’s a very good teacher and he knows so much, cooking with him is so interesting and yet he’s never pushed me towards science like the rest of my family, he always encouraged me to make my own choices. i look up to him a lot, since he has to deal with being an immigrant and a non native speaker of portuguese, and yet he works so hard and has achieved so much! besides he’s created & published optimized chromatography methods and imo that’s really cool

 30 . 06 . 2017 
Microbiology notes !!! 
Yesterday I took my physics final exam and it went great: I got a 27/30, which is way more than what I expected as Physics is one of my worst subjects. 
My next exam, microbiology, is in four days and I’m starting to feel a bit anxious about it as it’s a pretty tough exam but I’ll try to do my best ! 

“Science has taught me that everything is more complicated than we first assume, and that being able to derive happiness from discovery is a recipe for a beautiful life.”
🌿🔬🌳🦋🍀🌼🌲
Ever since I was a child I have always been fascinated with science, mostly the biological sciences, the living sciences. Animals, plants, infectious diseases, microscopic beings, anatomy, neuroscience, physiology, microbiology and many more have all captured my attention. I feel as though we should empower and urge women to participate in the sciences not only to make discoveries but for equality. Destroying gender biases and making sure to not set gender norms from an early age will help females feel encouraged to go into the sciences, however a lot of work needs to be done. If we don’t see more women in the sciences, there could be dire consequences. I work as a nurse in healthcare, more specifically on a cardiac floor, I know that often times women present with symptoms that are vastly different than how a man presents with a heart attack. However, in EDs all over the country women are being misdiagnosed and are often sent home where they later have a heart attack. Let’s encourage our daughters, sisters, nieces etc., to follow their passion and encourage them to pursue their interests