microbial ecology and antibiotics

Douglas B. Kell dbk at aber.ac.uk
Wed Feb 1 04:43:15 EST 1995

In article <3gdv35$14i at newsbf02.news.aol.com> rgyure at aol.com (RGyure) writes:

>My interest is in natural microbial communities, and the role of
>antibiotics in interspecies competition. In the broader pictutre, I feel
>that if we understand microbial response to and production of antibiotic
>compounds more fully, we can begin to conceive of better ecological
>strategies for combatting infections in humans. 


>Thanks out there! Respond to Rgyure @aol.com    or    gyure at edgewood.edu

The default view is that antibiosis by bacteria does not occur in nature
(Williams, S.T. (1982) Pedobiologia 23, 427-435), the concentrations made 
being too small. High-yielding strains are made by long rounds of mutation 
and selection, and the higfh yield itself depends on a clever and appropriate
feeding regime.

In the March 1995 issue of TREE (out ca 14/2) I will be summarising the view 
that bacterial secondary metabolites 9ncluding 'antibiotics' are really 
pheromones. This is a mucxh more defensible position,


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