This article discusses specifically
how bacteria are now becoming resistant to antibiotics. This is largely due to
the fact that bacteria have been increasingly evolving, they have a high
mutation and division rate, which gives them an advantage evolutionary wise.

Bacteria are also able to use horizontal gene transfer in order to become
resistant to the antibiotics. It takes years to develop antibiotics and by the
time they are developed, bacteria have already evolved, potentially multiple
times. Antibiotics have been developed to bind to the fundamental proteins that
bacteria have to stop these mechanisms. The ways that bacteria have been
becoming resistant are by preventing the binding of the antibiotic to the
protein, damaging or modifying the antibiotic and by prohibiting the antibiotic
to enter the cell. This review looks into how the molecular and ecological
factors impact antibiotic resistance.

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The distribution of fitness effects
of beneficial mutations (DFBM) demonstrates the relationship between fitness
and mutations. It demonstrates that the DFBM is exponential making it possible
to estimate the fitness and mutation effects. When a low amount of antibiotics
are used, low fitness mutations will have higher fitness than a wild type,
which results in many mutations. When a high concentration of antibiotic is
used, only a small amount of resistance occurs and this is currently how we are
using antibiotics is the medical field because it is able to kill off the
bacteria more effectively. Horizontal gene transfer currently has no DFBM but
it is still suggested that the fitness cost will still have impact on the
resistance.

In order to better understand how
to predict the cost of resistance, the phenotype and phenotypic variations in
bacteria has to be understood. This cost of resistance can be determined by the
systems-based approach, which looks into the compensatory mutations and the
effects of resistance. The systems-based approach also looks into many levels
ranging from proteins to cellular mechanisms. Some ways that compensatory
mutations can occur are that the enzyme can be stored intragenic or extragenic,
increasing the alternative path enzymes, decreasing the enzymes function and
reducing the cost of carrying the plasmid. It is possible for a reversion of
resistance mutation but it occurs much less often and it dependent on the
absence of the drug.

Ecology also has a large influence
on the evolution of resistance. One technique in fighting bacteria is multidrug
treatment. Although this has been an efficient method in killing the bacteria,
it has been shown that it may actually increase the resistance. If an
antagonistic interaction occurs in the antibiotics, it will only slightly
resist the mutation. If a synergistic interaction occurs, it will largely
increase the mutation.

In conclusion, the article
highlighted how antibiotic resistance has occurred and the mechanisms that
bacteria have undergone in their evolution. The article examined how DFBM, cost
of resistance and ecology have all affected bacteria in their evolution towards
resistance.

I think that the article did a
decent job in describing how bacteria have become resistant to antibiotics. It
proposed many problems that scientist are now facing concerning this problem
and detailed the mechanisms in how bacteria is able to evolve, yet it offered
no resolution to this problem. Instead of suggesting areas of research or
highlighting successful research, it only focused on how the bacteria are
evolving and how antibiotics are becoming less and less potent. This may be
because there is not an abundant amount of research because this is a new and
current problem.