Using 1 Germ to Fight Another When Today's Antibiotics Fail

Scientists are racing to find novel ways to treat infections when traditional antibiotics fail, and they're developing unusual approaches such as pitting one germ against another.

In one experiment, a patient inhaled a virus culled from sewage to try to tame her bacterial lung infection. Viruses called phages are bacteria's natural predators. Scientists try to find the phage that matches the patient's bug.

Increasingly people are dying of infections that once were easy to treat, as bacteria rapidly evolve to resist today's best medicines.

Another potential new option starves bacteria, tricking bugs into taking in a mimic of the iron they need to grow. Other researchers are trying to rev up the immune system to better fight back.

All the research is in early stages.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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