This paper is only a mock research paper that is only meant for you to see how to document your references in your "Review of Literature" section of your science project and lab writeups. It is NOT a sample science project paper.
A Brief Overview of Antibiotic Resistance in Bacteria
A nasty cold takes you by surprise. There is a big exam tomorrow; you reach for the leftover penicillin
in the medicine cabinet. That ought to get rid of this virus. Directions say, "take one" – you take two because
you are feeling terrible. Maybe tomorrow you will be better. What is wrong with this scenario? First and
foremost, antibiotics have NO EFFECT on viruses. Secondly, a prescription should only be taken as directed.
This scenario could set up a potentially deadly situation. When antibiotics are taken indiscriminately, the stage
is set for the selection of resistant bacteria. First documented in 1960, resistant bacteria are not harmed by
one or more antibiotics (Levy 1998, 49). With resistant bacteria infections, traditional treatments often fail
and the patient becomes sicker, and may even die. How do bacteria become resistant? What increases the
chances of bacterial resistance? And how much of a threat are resistant bacteria?
Made naturally, antibiotics are designed to interfere with or kill other microorganisms (Ambile-Cuevas
et al. 1995, 10; Levy 1998, 55). Microbes that make the antibiotics have devised ways to protect themselves
from their self-manufactured toxins (Ambile-Cuevas et al. 1995, 3). This resistance can also be passed on to
other bacteria, eventhose of different species. When a population of bacteria is exposed to an antibiotic (which
occurs, for example, when we take antibiotics), those bacteria NOT resistant to the drug die first. The resistant
ones are left behind to produce more resistant bacteria (Ambile-Cuevas et al. 1995, 4; Levy 1998, 56). Some
activities contributing to the observed increase in resistant bacteria include the following (in no particular order):
Resistant bacteria pose an ever-increasing threat (Anonymous 2006, 16). Several strains of the tuberculosis
bacterium, resistant to one, two, or even three antibiotics, have been isolated. Some bacteria seem to acquire
the DNA of other bacteria, and therefore antibiotic resistance genes, more readily than others (Grady 1996, 22).
This has produced particularly pathogenic strains of some food borne bacteria, such as E. coli and Salmonella,
which no longer respond to antibiotic treatment (Holmberg et al. 1987, 33). Outbreaks of these infections have
made headlines recently.
In summary, the use of antibiotics selects for resistant bacteria. These bacteria have the potential to evade
treatment and possibly harm or even kill patients they infect. Strategies for reducing the current increase in
antibiotic resistance include taking antibiotics as prescribed, and only when necessary, and avoiding the use of
antibacterial products in the home.
Ambile-Cuevas CF, Cardemas-Garcia M, Ludgar M. 1995. "Antibiotic resistance." American Scientist; 83 (4) 320-329. pp 1-11.
Anonymous. 2006. "Apples and Oranges of Antibiotic Resistance." http://cut_to_the_truth.com. pp 12-18.
Grady D. 1996. "Quick-change pathogens gain on evolutionary edge." Science; 274: 1081. pp 19-29.
Holmberg S, Osterholm M, Sanger K, Cohen M. 1987. "Drug-resistant salmonella from animals fed antimicrobials."
New England Journal of Medicine; 31: 617-622. pp 30-47.
Levy SB. 1998. "The challenge of antibiotic resistance." Scientific American; 278 (3):46-53. pp 48-55.
Note: If you would like to see how to do other types of sources with this style, go to http://library.osu.edu/sites/guides/csegd.php.
Note: "et al" is a latin abbreviation for "and others." It is used for referencing three or more authors in parenthetical references.