Scientists will test unique chemical compounds
from marine samples found in deep sea trenches

14 February 2013 Last updated at 23:13 ET

Antibiotics search to focus on sea bed

Researchers are embarking on an £8m project to discover new antibiotics at the bottom of the ocean.

A team, led by scientists at Aberdeen University, is hunting for undiscovered chemicals among life that has evolved in deep sea trenches.

Prof Marcel Jaspars said the team hoped to find “the next generation” of infection-fighting drugs.

England’s chief medical officer has warned of an “antibiotic apocalypse” with too few new drugs in the pipeline.

Few samples have ever been collected from ocean trenches – deep, narrow valleys in the sea floor which can plunge down to almost 6.8 miles (11km).

Yet researchers believe there is great potential for discovering antibiotics in these extreme conditions.

Read more: BBC News – Antibiotics search to focus on sea bed.

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