Its like, instead of ‘Put a bird on it!’, scientists are like ‘Put a virus on it!’
Got cancer? Put a virus on it! In constant pain? Put a virus on it! Addicted to cigarettes? Put a virus on it! Genetic disease? Put a virus on it!
Got acne? Put a virus on it!
Acne, though not life-threatening, sucks.
If you dont have acne, consider yourself lucky. Some people can get it relatively under control with a combination of over the counter meds and prescription meds (both with obnoxious side-effects), and neurotic behaviors. And of course, one persons ritual might not work for someone else.
Theres always Accutane (eee…). And then there are antibiotics. But of course antibiotics come with the obvious side-effect of drug resistant bacteria.
LETS PUT A VIRUS ON IT!!!
Fleas on the backs of fleas– Like there are bacteria that live on us, there are viruses that live in bacteria. Bacteriophages. This group of scientists asked a fun question: Are the viruses on the faces of people with acne different than the viruses on the faces of people who dont have acne? Like, maybe the folks without acne have some virus that is really good at keeping the bacteria in check!
Oh, I forgot to mention, your face is covered in viruses. Specifically, these viruses:
Unfortunately, the answer to why some people have acne and some dont isnt as easy as ‘good face viruses’. It turns out that there isnt a whole heck of a lot different, genetically, between the viruses found on acne/non-acne faces.
But the scientists still learned some cool things–
1– The viruses they found were good at blowing up the bacteria that cause acne! YAY! Maybe we could put viruses into anti-acne creams!
2– The bacteria could become resistant to the viruses. BOO! We are back in the same boat as we were before with the antibiotics.
3– The enzymes these viruses use to dissolve the bacterial cell wall when they want to release lots of babby viruses was also good at blowing up bacteria! Outside of the context of the virus! And since these enzymes target highly conserved parts of the bacterial cell wall, the bacteria arent developing resistance to the virus guts! And instead of taking days–>weeks to work, like antibiotics, these enzymes blew up the bacteria in minutes! So theoretically, one could make a cocktail of these enzymes (from different viruses) and turn that into an anti-acne treatment!! YAY AGAIN!
Oh viruses! Is there anything you all cant do?