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Zika in fetal brain tissue responds to a popular antibiotic


Credit: Elizabeth Di Lullo

Infection of developing human brain with the Zika virus (green) highlights susceptibility of radial glial cells during fetal development.

Stashed in: Awesome, Medicine, Medical Breakthroughs, Antibiotics

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I had never heard of an antibiotic fighting a virus before but them found this Reddit comment:

There are different classifications for drugs, e.g. antibacterial, antiviral, anthelminthic, and the more broad "antibiotic". Antibiotic literally means "against life".

Now, technically viruses are not alive. However, that does not mean that antibiotics cannot be effective against viruses. Remember that viruses utilize a lot of the same machinery as bacteria, being comprised of nucleic acids just like living things. This means that whatever mechanism of action azithromycin employs against bacteria likely has an effect on the Zika virus as well.

TL;DR If a substance kills one type of biological entity, it may very well kill another. Insecticide is not a tasty beverage.


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