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Antibiotics and Evolution
Kristy J. Wilson
Sam, a pre-med college student, routinely gets dialysis and develops a urinary tract infection. The infection is from a bacterium that the news media is calling a "superbug" from India. Sam does some internet searches to find out more information about his condition. He examines popular news stories, primary literature, and considers what the United States should do about the increased prevalence of antibiotic resistance. To explore this issue, students form groups in which they are a politician, a parent, or a doctor, with each student bringing different information to the discussion. The case also discusses evolutionary principles and how they connect to antibiotic resistance. The case was developed for an introductory biology course taken by science majors who are not majoring in biology. It could be used in any introductory biology course or even as an introduction for a specific course on evolution.
|Keywords:||Antibiotics; evolution; superbug, infectious disease; DNA; mutation; plasmid; urinary tract infection; UTI; E. coli; Escherichia coli; bacteria; New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase-1; NDM; NDM-1|
|Topical Area:||Policy issues, Science and the media|
|Educational Level:||Undergraduate lower division, Undergraduate upper division|
|Type/Method:||Analysis (Issues), Discussion, Interrupted, Journal Article, Role-Play|
|Subject Headings:||Biology (General) Evolutionary Biology Genetics / Heredity Microbiology Public Health Medicine (General) Nursing|
|Copyright:||Copyright held by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Please see our usage guidelines, which outline our policy concerning permissible reproduction of this work.|
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