Phages, formally known as bacteriophages, are viruses that solely kill and selectively target bacteria. They are the most common biological entities in nature, and have been shown to effectively fight and destroy multi-drug resistant bacteria. Namely, when all antibiotics fail, phages still succeed in killing the bacteria and may save a life from an infection.
The main concern for all of us now is the alarming rate of increasing 'superbugs' that are resistant to most – if not all – antibiotics, as well as the impact they will have on human health and the longevity of life. These issues, combined with a lack of regulation to approve the process of phage therapy for anything less than an absolute, no-alternative emergency, pose a serious concern for us. We hope that through our work here at IPATH, we can make this treatment more widely available to save lives where no other treatments could.
The YouTube channel "Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell" explains how bacteriophages infect and destroy in this colorful animated video:
Check out our UC San Diego Health Newsroom site on
Phages and Phage Therapy here to learn more and watch some informative videos.