WikiJournal of Medicine/Volume 8 Issue 1
WikiJournal of Medicine
Open access • Publication charge free • Public peer review • Wikipedia-integrated
VOLUME 8 (2021)
ISSUE 1Previous issue
Authors: Joana Azeredo, Jean-Paul Pirnay, Diana Priscila Pires, Mzia Kutateladze, Krystyna Dabrowska, Rob Lavigne, Bob G Blasdel
Phage therapy refers to the use of bacteriophages (phages - bacterial viruses) as therapeutic agents against infectious bacterial diseases. This therapeutic approach emerged in the beginning of the 20th century but was progressively replaced by the use of antibiotics in most parts of the world after the second world war. More recently however, the alarming rise of multidrug-resistant bacteria and the consequent need for antibiotic alternatives has renewed interest in phages as antimicrobial agents. Several scientific, technological and regulatory advances have supported the credibility of a second revolution in phage therapy. Nevertheless, phage therapy still faces many challenges that include: i) the need to increase phage collections from reference phage banks; ii) the development of efficient phage screening methods for the fast identification of the therapeutic phage(s); iii) the establishment of efficient phage therapy strategies to tackle infectious biofilms; iv) the validation of feasible phage production protocols that assure quality and safety of phage preparations; and (v) the guarantee of stability of phage preparations during manufacturing, storage and transport. Moreover, current maladapted regulatory structures represent a significant hurdle for potential commercialization of phage therapeutics. This article describes the past and current status of phage therapy and presents the most recent advances in this domain.
Author: Kholhring Lalchhandama
The history of penicillin was shaped by the contributions of numerous scientists. The ultimate result was the discovery of the mould Penicillium's antibacterial activity and the subsequent development of penicillins, the most widely used antibiotics. Following an accidental discovery of the mould, later identified as Penicillium rubens, as the source of the antibacterial principle (1928) and the production of a pure compound (1942), penicillin became the first naturally derived antibiotic. There is anecdotal evidence of ancient societies using moulds to treat infections and of awareness that various moulds inhibited bacterial growth. However, it is not clear if Penicillium species were the species traditionally used or if the antimicrobial substances produced were penicillin. In 1928, Alexander Fleming was the first to discover the antibacterial substance secreted by the Penicillium mould and concentrate the active substance involved, giving it the name penicillin. His success in treating Harry Lambert's streptococcal meningitis, an infection until then fatal, proved to be a critical moment in the medical use of penicillin. Many later scientists were involved in the stabilisation and mass production of penicillin and in the search for more productive strains of Penicillium. Among the most important were Ernst Chain and Howard Florey, who shared with Fleming the 1945 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
Authors: Sofia M. Ramos, Reinhardt G. Dreyer, Thandi E. Buthelezi
Bilateral persistent sciatic artery (PSA) is a rare vascular anomaly. We report an exceptionally rare case of complete bilateral PSAs, diagnosed on computed tomography angiography (CTA) in a patient who sustained a gunshot wound to the lower limb. Incidental PSAs are unlikely to have clinical significance, however, the unusual anatomy and higher incidence of complications requires accurate reporting of such variants. In this case, the anomaly paradoxically proved beneficial given the proximity of the gunshot wound to the femoral vessels. The embryology, clinical and imaging findings, potential complications, and treatment options regarding PSA are discussed.
Does the packaging of health information affect the assessment of its reliability? A randomized controlled trial protocol
Authors: Denise Smith, James Heilman, Leela Raj
Background: Wikipedia is frequently used as a source of health information. However, the quality of its content varies widely across articles. The DISCERN tool is a brief questionnaire developed in 1996 by the Division of Public Health and Primary Health Care of the Institute of Health Sciences of the University of Oxford. They claim it provides users with a valid and reliable way of assessing the quality of written information. However, the DISCERN instrument’s reliability in measuring the quality of online health information, particularly whether or not its scores are affected by reader biases about specific publication sources, has not yet been explored. [...]
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