Re: SuperGerms and Longevity

From: KPJ (
Date: Mon Jun 12 2000 - 15:16:13 MDT

It appears as if <> wrote:
|Don't buy "antibacterial" soaps, detergents, and cleaning
|agents. You're not going to sterilize your skin or sink;
|you just train the locals to deal with antibiotics.

This quote give one something to think about:

Chemists who invented new pesticides were astonished when
populations of insects developed resistance to them, but the
whole point about evolution is that any new method of killing
things will, unless it completely wipes out a species, give rise to
a population resistant to the killer. One result is that cotton
farmers in the very States of the US where resistance to Darwinian
ideas is at its strongest are struggling every season with the
consequences of evolution at work in their own fields.

In hospitals, bacteria that cause diseases are increasingly resist-
ant to drugs such as penicillin, for the same reason. The drugs
kill all the susceptible bacteria, but, by definition, the survivors
of an attack are the ones who are not susceptible to the drug.
The more you kill susceptible bacteria, the more opportunities
you give the others to spread -- and bacteria breed far more
quickly than human beings, offsetting the disadvantage they
would otherwise have by not breeding sexually. The surprise, to
an evolutionary biologist, is not that after half a century of use
penicillin is losing its effectiveness, but rather that it retains any
effectiveness at all."

(John & Mary Gribbin: "Almost Everyone's Guide to Science",
 ISBN 0-75380-769-6, page 129)

What does not kill us, makes us stranger.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Jul 27 2000 - 14:13:10 MDT