Beef cattle in a barn on the Larson Farms feedlot in Maple Park, Ill.
January 28, 2014 Documents show that Food and Drug Administration scientists allowed 18 drugs to be sold to farmers despite a risk to human health.
Yes, you could do this at home. Growing bacteria you find in a pile of dirt or a local pond might reveal the next big antibiotic.
Charlotte Raymond/Science Source
December 12, 2013 The world needs new antibiotics because so many of the existing drugs are losing their punch. Some people are already talking about a "post-antibiotic era," when bacteria can defeat all the drugs doctors have at their disposal. Two scientists are crowdfunding a campaign to get everyone digging for new antibiotics.
Young broilers nibble feed at a chicken farm in Luling, Texas. The Food and Drug Administration has issued new guidance on how drug companies label antibiotics for livestock.
December 11, 2013 The Food and Drug Administration Wednesday advised companies to change the labels on their drugs to make it illegal for livestock producers to use drugs for "growth promotion" or "feed efficiency." The announcement is the latest step in a long-running effort by the FDA to reduce the use of antibiotics in agriculture.
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Turkeys sit in a barn in Sonoma, Calif. An estimated 46 million turkeys are cooked and eaten during Thanksgiving meals in the U.S.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
November 27, 2013 As Americans prepare to baste and roast plump, juicy holiday birds, we couldn't help but wonder which antibiotics the average Thanksgiving turkey might have been given. The government doesn't collect data on antibiotic use in turkeys. And producers don't volunteer any.
In recent years, pork producers have found ways to keep the animals healthy through improved hygiene.
M. Spencer Green/AP
November 4, 2013 There's a curious twist in the contentious debate over feeding antibiotics to animals in order to make them grow faster. Evidence suggests using antibiotics for growth promotion, at least among pigs, doesn't even make economic sense. But some pork producers don't believe it.
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Cattle crowd inside a feedlot operated by JBS Five Rivers Colorado Beef in Wiley, Colo.
John Moore/Getty Images
November 1, 2013 When it comes to antibiotics on the farm, it's not always a win-win. And when there's a fight, veterinarians are right in the middle of it, pushed back and forth by conflicting loyalties.
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Unless it's strep throat, antibiotics are unlikely to help you get over a sore throat.
October 4, 2013 Public health officials have been working to reduce use of antibiotics for years. But fresh research shows that antibiotics are still being prescribed where they don't do much good, for ailments like sore throats and bronchitis. Both doctors and patients are to blame for that, experts say.
Streptococcus pyogenes shouldn't be taken lightly. Left untreated, an infection with germ can trigger an autoimmune disease that damages the heart.
September 26, 2013 In some countries, it's easier to get HIV drugs than an old-fashioned form of penicillin that prevents heart damage from rheumatic fever, scientists say. The world's supply of this type of penicillin has dwindled over the past few decades, but rheumatic fever hasn't.
Piglets in a pen on a hog farm in Frankenstein, Mo.
August 29, 2013 No one knows exactly how farmers use antibiotics. Many public health experts say the government should collect and publish detailed information because antibiotic-resistant bacteria are an increasingly urgent problem. But many farm groups are opposed.
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A truckload of live turkeys arrives at a Cargill plant in Springdale, Ark., in 2011. Most turkeys in the U.S. are regularly given low doses of antibiotics.
May 1, 2013 Turkey producers contend that they use antibiotics judiciously to help keep their flocks healthy.
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April 17, 2013 A new analysis of government data finds that antibiotic-resistant bacteria that cause human illness were widespread in supermarket meat samples tested. The implications are significant: that the bacteria had become resistant to antibiotics back at the farm because farmers were overusing them.
Organic apples hang from trees in an orchard in Forest Range, Adelaide Hills, South Australia.
April 10, 2013 Both fruits are vulnerable to a nasty disease called fire blight that can devastate orchards. So organic labeling standards allow for antibiotics to be used on apple and pear trees. That exemption is set to end in 2014 — but growers say they need a little more time.
Klebsiella pneumoniae, seen here with an electron microscope, are the most common superbugs causing highly drug-resistant infections in hospitals.
Kwangshin Kim/Science Source
March 5, 2013 Federal health officials warned that a dangerous group of superbugs has become increasingly common in hospitals. The bacteria are said to be resistant to virtually all antibiotics.
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Giancario Gemignani-Hernandez, 2, of Pittsburgh has his ear examined by Dr. Alejandro Hoberman.
Gene J. Puskar/AP
February 25, 2013 The new guidelines for treating childhood ear infections are intended to reduce unnecessary antibiotics use. They say doctors should look at the eardrum to make sure a child really has an ear infection, instead of relying on symptoms. And if the child doesn't have severe symptoms, see if the ear gets better on its own.
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Would Woodstock have happened without penicillin?
January 30, 2013 Before penicillin was found to be effective against syphilis during World War II, sex brought with it the risk of syphilis, an disease that can cause blindness, dementia and paralysis. An economist argues that treatment was a key factor in the sexual revolution.
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