• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Bacteria 'talk' study raises drug hopes

Insights into how bacteria "talk" to each other could help scientists halt their growing resistance to antibiotics.

A study by Edinburgh University, in collaboration with Nottingham and Durham universities, has revealed bacteria use a form of communication similar to human language, but employing chemical signals instead of words.

This enables the bacteria to thrive and researchers hope that by interpreting it they can develop new drugs to fight infections without bacteria developing a resistance.

Scientists say the number of dangerous bacteria becoming resistant to anti­biotics is increasing

Researchers found bacteria recognise their physical and social environment by producing and responding to chemical compounds which act as messages. Bacteria responded differently to a combination of two messages than they did to either by itself.

Contextual targeting label: 

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.