Pandacillin? Giant Panda May be New Source for Antibiotics

Giant pandas may look cute and all, frolickin' in the wild and chewin' bamboo leaves and such, but they may just be the latest warrior in our fight against drug-resistant superbugs.

Turns out, researchers in China have discovered that giant pandas have powerful antibiotic ("pandacillin"? Hah!) in their blood that can destoy fungi and bacteria faster than conventional antibiotics:

The antibiotic is thought to be released by the bear’s immune system to protect them infections when they are living in the wild. Researchers discovered the compound, known as cathelicidin-AM, after analysing the panda’s DNA. [...]

Dr Xiuwen Yan, who led the research at the Life Sciences College of Nanjing Agricultural University in China, said: “It showed potential antimicrobial activities against wide spectrum of microorganisms including bacteria and fungi, both standard and drug-resistant strains.

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