Research chemists are in an arms race against bacteria that have evolved forms that have resistance to common antibiotics. The most notorious of recent times is methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureas, known by its acronym, MRSA. It is a variant of the common staphylococcus aureas that survives both penicillin and its beefed-up version, methicillin.
We are staphylococcus aureas,
Past masters at making you ill.
You fought back, and were briefly victorious,
By killing us off with a pill.
So we mugged up on natural selection,
And learned to mutate and evolve
Into forms that gave us more protection
And gave you tough new problems to solve.
When we’d learned to survive penicillin,
We thought we were safe for a while;
But you found a new way of killing,
In your chemically murderous style:
Methicillin (it’s semi-synthetic –
Penicillin with knobs, you might say).
So we bred at a rate quite frenetic
And evolved into MRSA.
While you’re doing your best to destroy us,
It’s no wonder we microbes all hate you.
Though your antibiotics annoy us,
We know we can far out-mutate you . . .