Shining a Light on Infections: Combining Physics and Biology to Solve a Big Problem

Helen E. Parker*, Robert R. Thomson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

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Bacteria are everywhere. Most of the time this is perfectly fine, and often it is a good thing. The bacteria in our guts help make the most of the nutrition in our food, for example. However, bacteria can also cause infections. Antibiotics are drugs that are often used to fight off infection-causing bacteria, but something worrying is happening—bacteria are becoming harder to kill. This is bad news because it means that we face a future in which infections are difficult to cure. Scientists all over the world—including biologists, chemists, engineers, and physicists—are working together to find a solution to this problem. In this article, we take a look at why infections are becoming harder to treat, and how a type of light called ultraviolet light might help.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1011554
JournalFrontiers for Young Minds
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jul 2023


  • Ultraviolet
  • Interdisciplinary
  • laser
  • Infection
  • antibiotics
  • Light
  • antibiotic resistance

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