Free Penicillin: Transformative Invention in Medicine Essay Sample

Scientists have made various inventions over the years. These inventions have been made in various fields such as industry, agriculture and medicine, and they have greatly impacted on humans. In my opinion, one of the inventions that have brought profound changes was the discovery of penicillin in the field of medicine.

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Penicillin was introduced in 1928 after an elaborate research was conducted by Alexander Fleming, who was a Scottish scientist. Fleming discovered that when penicillin notatum was grown in the right substrate it resulted into a substance which had antibiotic properties. He named this substance penicillin. Later, other scientists like Howard Walter Florey, Ernst Chain and Normal Heatley learnt that penicillin could be used as medicine for handling bacterial infections in human beings because it is nontoxic to human health.

Therefore, it was the first group of antibiotics to be successfully applied in dealing with bacterial infections. Penicillin works by breaking down the cell walls formed by microorganisms. However, it cannot be effective in those microorganisms, which do not produce cell walls. Over the years, penicillin has been effective in curing syphilis, throat infections, and other common infectious ailments.  Therefore, it has greatly helped in curbing bacterial infections.

However, it has been realized that the use of penicillin causes some side effects like hypersensitivity, nausea, rashes ad even diarrhea. Its use is also limited by the fact that it triggers allergic sensitivity such as skin reactions among individuals who use it. Some bacteria have also become impervious to penicillin. Resistant microorganisms produce penicillin, which is an enzyme that destroys the antibiotic.

Although there are some challenges associated with using penicillin, it has been instrumental in dealing with many bacterial infections. Consequently, there has been a significant drop in the number of deaths stemming from such infections. For instance, today if individual contracts infection like syphilis there is hope for him or her to recover because antibiotics are available to treat it in its early stages. In conclusion, the discovery of penicillin has made profound changes in medicine.

The widespread use of penicillin since its discovery has led to the development of various derivatives and related antibiotics. Scientists have worked to create new formulations and modify the structure of penicillin to enhance its efficacy and overcome issues related to resistance. These efforts have resulted in a diverse range of antibiotics that can target a broader spectrum of bacteria and address the challenges posed by resistant strains.

Additionally, advancements in biotechnology have enabled the production of semi-synthetic penicillins, expanding the arsenal of antibiotics available for medical use. These semi-synthetic versions retain the core structure of penicillin while incorporating modifications that improve stability, absorption, and resistance to bacterial enzymes. This innovation has been crucial in adapting and optimizing penicillin for diverse medical scenarios.

Furthermore, research continues to explore alternative antibiotic compounds and therapeutic strategies. The understanding of microbial genetics and the mechanisms of antibiotic resistance has paved the way for the development of novel antimicrobial agents. Scientists are exploring new avenues, such as bacteriophage therapy and the use of antimicrobial peptides, to combat infections and circumvent the limitations associated with traditional antibiotics like penicillin.

In the realm of personalized medicine, there is a growing focus on tailoring antibiotic treatments based on individual factors, including genetic variations and the specific characteristics of the infecting microorganism. This approach aims to optimize therapeutic outcomes while minimizing adverse effects, offering a more precise and targeted use of antibiotics like penicillin.

In conclusion, the legacy of penicillin continues to evolve as scientists push the boundaries of antibiotic research. The quest for innovative solutions to combat bacterial infections remains dynamic, with ongoing efforts to enhance the effectiveness of penicillin and explore alternative strategies in the ever-changing landscape of medical science.


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