What alternatives to antibiotics are being developed?Immunotherapeutics
Immunotherapeutics is another promising intervention that involves the use of molecules that can boost the host immune system to prevent the disease at infection prone times. A granulocyte colony-stimulating factors (G-CSF) called Pegfilgrastim is one of the most successful immunotherapeutic interventions in human health for inducing neutrophil production in chemotherapeutic patients experiencing low neutrophil counts.
Maintaining an appropriate neutrophil number in blood enables the immune system to prevent infections. Immunotherapeutics also helps to boost the immune system in cattle and reduce the incidence of mastitis when exploited for agricultural purpose. Users administer pegbovigrastim, a bovine G-CSF to cattle before parturition.
An advantage of immunotherapeutics as an alternative to antibiotics is that they boost the immune system and prevent infectious diseases. A disadvantage is that they require precise timing which is extremely challenging for on-farm applications.Biotics
Biotics that can be pro-pre- or synbiotics modulate gut microbial community towards health, and they demonstrate inconsistent efficacy. Probiotics are living organisms or good bacteria for international feeding to a host Probiotics are molecular precursors that expand the presence of existing beneficial gut microbiota of a host. Synbiotics are combination prebiotics and probiotics. The purpose of this biotics is to affect the gut microbiota in a manner that improves health.
The gut microbial community of mammals' complex consortium comprises over 500 different bacterial species. The current challenge for researchers is lack of knowledge for a precise mechanism on the contribution of each member to the health of a host. An absence of this knowledge contributes to variable results. Modulating the gut microbial community has become an alternative to the antibiotics. An investigation of the way gut bacterial interacts with one another and with the animal hosts is now an active area of research globally.
Advantages of the above approaches are that the only target the disease-causing bacterium for treatment and not other members of the beneficial microbial. They act differently from most antibiotics that attack the pathogen target together with the commensal bacteria. More development for these specific approaches by alternatives to antibiotics methods is still ongoing to improve potency, reliability, and deliverability.
Solutions to antibiotic-resistance are multifaceted because antibiotics play varying roles and one alternative cannot replace their function. Researchers need to use methods such as vaccines, immunotherapeutics and gut microbiota modulation as methods of treating and preventing illnesses.