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2. The Discovery of Penicillin
About this Lecture
In this module, we take a look at the discovery of penicillin. We see that while the penicillin mould was discovered by Alexander Fleming; he was unable to isolate the active ingredient. Instead this crucial task was the work of a team of scientists at Oxford University. These scientists were able to isolate the active ingredient and then use it to treat a patient, showing penicillin's effectiveness.
In this course, Dr Robert Bud (Science Museum, London) examines the history of antibiotics. We take a look at what medicine and medicines were like before the discovery of antibiotics. We then look at the discovery of penicillin and how it was mass produced in the 1940s. We then look at the growth in the number of other antibiotics and how this went hand in hand with the development of the pharmaceutical industry. In the penultimate module, we take a closer look at antibiotic resistance and how this affects the world today. In the concluding module, we examine the impact of antibiotics on medicine, the pharmaceutical industry and public attitudes towards germs and illness.
Dr. Robert Bud is Emeritus Keeper at The Science Museum in London. He has written widely on the history of science, with a particular in interest in the history of antibiotics. His book, Penicillin: Triumph and Tragedy, was published by Oxford University Press in 2007.
Cite this Lecture
Bud, R. (2021, September 22). Medicine Through Time – Antibiotics, 1920-2000 - The Discovery of Penicillin [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/medicine-through-time-antibiotics/the-discovery-of-penicillin
Bud, R. "Medicine Through Time – Antibiotics, 1920-2000 – The Discovery of Penicillin." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 22 Sep 2021, https://www.massolit.io/courses/medicine-through-time-antibiotics/the-discovery-of-penicillin