Historiography of Antibiotics: A Paradigm Shift in Healthcare during the Twentieth-Century

Jatinder Pal Singh, Jackson John


The introduction of antibiotics since the 1940’s has played a pivotal role in impeding the spread of several infectious diseases. Antibiotics can be natural (produced by bacteria and fungi), semi-synthetic (chemically altered for improving effectiveness) or synthetic in nature. Penicillin can be called as a pioneer miracle drug that revolutionized healthcare post World War II and opened a door for researchers to discover an armamentarium of antibacterial agents. In spite of this, antibiotics in the primary phase of development were not only expensive but also scarce. In due course of time, the process of manufacturing was modified and new formulations were developed. Apart from penicillin, streptomycin, chloramphenicol and tetracyclines were the antibiotics that were developed with collaboration among researchers, industry and policy makers. These were distributed in the form of coated-pills or embedded in ampoules and flasks. In parallel to their usefulness in treating diseases, there was a rise of a clinical phenomenon known as antibiotic resistance (being non-sensitive) among different bacteria. In the twenty-first century, the primary focus of the researchers is in finding ways to combat antibiotic resistance and ironically many pharmaceutical firms have severely limited investments for discovering new antibiotics owing to negative returns of investments.  

Full Text:


Copyright (c) 2018 Edupedia Publications Pvt Ltd

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


All published Articles are Open Access at  https://journals.pen2print.org/index.php/ijr/ 

Paper submission: ijr@pen2print.org