Poo viruses from exotic animals could save the NHS billions, according to new research from the University of Sheffield. Viruses called bacteriophages, which occur naturally in feces, may be used in the treatment of diabetic ulcers that do not respond to other treatments, reports Sky News. But that’s possible, and more research is needed.
There are thousands of different types of bacteriophages that can selectively kill a specific type of bacteria. They can even kill bacteria that have developed resistance to antibiotics. Bacteriophages and their ability to kill bacteria were discovered in the early 20th century.
Researchers in Sheffield are said to have studied the flower of lemongrass, Visayan warthogs and Guinea baboons, among others. All are zoo animals in Yorkshire.
– Despite the smell, faeces from endangered animals could hold the key to killing infectious bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics, Graham Stafford of the University of Sheffield, leader of the study in question, told Sky News.
Fight against resistant bacteria
According to Stafford, researchers are now working hard to develop the stool “as an effective treatment for patients for whom the loss of a leg, foot or leg is the next option.”
Researchers estimate that public health care in Great Britain could save about 1 billion British pounds, or about 13 billion kroner, a year if treatment with animal constipation were implemented.
Graham Stafford says his researchers are part of “a major effort in the UK life sciences to find new antimicrobial tools to combat the major global challenge of antibiotic resistance”.
In 2019, The Lancet reported that 1.27 million people died worldwide due to resistant bacteria.
– It’s wonderful to see endangered animals contributing to such a positive and powerful cause. This makes an even stronger case for protecting endangered species, Stafford told Sky News.
read more: Experts: Last chance to stop “silent epidemic”.
read more: Close loopholes for countries developing antibiotic resistance
read more: UN report: How to stop resistant bacteria
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