New Sequencing Of Alexander Fleming’s Penicillin Mold Offers Hope In Fight Against Superbugs

KEY POINTS

  • Researchers revisit Alexander Fleming’s original penicillin mold
  • Penicillin producers are using a different method to make the antibiotic on a global scale
  • The new sequencing may offer a more effective way to design penicillin

A new genome sequencing of the original mold that was significant to Alexander Fleming’s discovery of penicillin in 1928 may provide a new direction to how the medical industry is fighting superbugs today. 

A team of researchers from Imperial College London, Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International (CABI) and the University of Oxford used mold samples preserved from more than fifty years ago to identify the new genome sequencing. St. Mary’s Medical School, which is the location of Fleming’s penicillin discovery, is now part of Imperial College London. 

Compared to the new genome of Fleming’s mold, the researchers found that producers of penicillin today are using different strains to make the antibiotic on an

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