First Person: Herman O. Sintim

Herman O. Sintim, an organic chemist at Purdue University and a Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturer, discusses novel ways to target bacteria that cause illnesses.

Antibiotic resistance is on the rise, and we are potentially facing a time when standard antibiotics simply won’t work anymore. Herman O. Sintim, an organic chemist at Purdue University and a Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturer, is developing novel ways to target bacteria that cause illnesses. His approach is to prevent them from producing the toxins that lead to illness, rather than killing them. That kind of intervention avoids placing selection pressure on the bacteria, and so should reduce the chances that the bacteria will develop resistance to the intervention. Sintim discussed his research with managing editor Fenella Saunders.

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