FA2008 - BILD 3 - Lecture 01 (Introduction)

FA2008 - BILD 3 - Lecture 01 (Introduction) - Organismic...

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9/26/08 1 Organismic and Evolutionary Biology (BILD 3) Dr. Heather Henter African sunbirds WHY STUDY EVOLUTION? “Nothing in biology makes sense, except in the light of evolution.” Theodosius Dobzhansky Why do we have wisdom teeth? Why do we have goose bumps? Why can we test human drugs on mice, fruit flies, or even bacteria? SD Union Tribune 15 November 2007 Example of evolution by natural selection: bacterial evolution of resistance to antibiotics Imagine you are a soldier in civil war 3 times more likely to die from infectious disease (tuberculosis, pneumonia, meningitis, typhoid, syphilis, etc.) than from battle If wounded in battle, much more likely to die from infection than from trauma of wound itself Now, almost impossible to imagine dying from bacterial infection.
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9/26/08 2 WW I - Scottish doctor, Alexander Fleming, saw many young men die of infections 1920s, St. Mary’s Hospital, London, looking for antibacterial agents Working with Staphylococcus aureus , pathogenic bacteria Fleming went on vacation for a month Plate was contaminated with fungus Bacteria were inhibited Called it Penicillin, 1929 Howard Florey and team (Oxford) how to produce penicillin 1941 - tested penicillin on the 1st human, policeman Albert Alexander, scratched himself with rose thorn, infection Recovered but died when supply of penicillin ran out Fleming, Florey, et al. shared Nobel 1945 Lord Howard Florey (1898-1968) By 1943 - drug companies
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