History of the first antibioticPenicillin has been open in 1928. And here in the Soviet Union people continued to die even then when in the West this antibiotic already treated with might and main.

The weapon against microorganisms

Antibiotics (from the Greek words "anti-" - against and "BIOS" - life) - substances, selectively overwhelming vital signs of some microorganisms. The first antibiotic has been casually open in 1928 by English scientist Alexander Fleming. On Petri's cup where it grew up for the experiences a colony стафилококков, he has found an unknown grey-yellowish mould which has destroyed all microbes round itself. Fleming has studied a mysterious mould and has soon allocated from it antimicrobic substance. He called it "penicillin".

In 1939 English scientists Houard Florey and Ernst Cheyn have continued Fleming's researches and industrial production of penicillin has soon been adjusted. В1945 for merits before mankind Fleming, Florey and Cheyn have been awarded the Nobel Prize.

Panacea from a mould

In the USSR long time was bought by antibiotics for currency at exorbitant prices and in very limited quantity therefore on all of them did not suffice. Stalin has personally set for scientists a task about development of own medicine. For realisation of this task its choice has fallen on well-known doctor-microbiologist Zynaida Vissarionovna Ermolyeva. It thanks to it cholera epidemic near Stalingrad that has helped Red Army to win the Battle of Stalingrad has been stopped.

Many years later Ermolyev so remembered the conversation with the leader:

«-Over what you now work, Ermolyev's companion?

- I dream to be engaged in penicillin.

- What for penicillin?

- It is water of life, Joseph Vissarionovich. Yes, the most real water of life received from a mould. About penicillin it became known twenty years ago, but seriously so anybody and was not engaged in it. At least, at us.

- What do you want?.

- I want to find this mould and to prepare a preparation. If it is possible, we will rescue thousands or maybe million lives! Especially it seems to me it is important now when wounded soldiers pretty often perish from blood poisoning, gangrene and every possible inflammations.

- Act. You will provide with all necessary».

Iron lady of the Soviet science

To that fact that in December, 1944 began to make penicillin in large quantities in our country, we are obliged by Ermolyeva - the Don kazachka which with honours has ended a gymnasium, and then and female medical institute in Rostov.

The first sample of the Soviet antibiotic has been received by it from a mould brought from an air-raid shelter, being nearby to laboratory on Obukha Street. Experiences which were carried out by Ermolyeva on laboratory animals, have yielded tremendous results: literally dying experimental small animals whom before it have infected with the microbes causing a serious illness, literally after one injection of penicillin recovered in a short space of time. Only after that Ermolyeva has made the decision to try "water of life" in public, and soon penicillin began to apply everywhere in field hospitals.

Thus, Ermolyeva managed to rescue thousands hopeless patients. Contemporaries noted that this surprising woman differed nonfeminine "iron" character, vigour and commitment. For successful fight against infections on the Stalingrad front at the end of 1942 Ermolyeva has been awarded the order Lenin. And in 1943 it has awarded the Stalin award of the 1st degree which it has contributed to defence Fund on warplane purchase. So in the sky over native Rostov for the first time there was the well-known fighter "Zynaida Ermolyeva".

Behind them future

Ermolyev's all further life has devoted to studying of antibiotics. During this time she has received the first samples of such modern antibiotics, as streptomycin, interferon, бициллин, экмолин and дипасфен. And shortly before the death Zynaida Vissarionovna has told in conversation with journalists: «At a certain stage penicillin was the most real water of life, but life including life of bacteria, is not necessary on a place therefore for a victory over them new, more perfect drugs are necessary. To create them in the shortest terms and to give to people is in what my pupils day and night are engaged. So be not surprised, if one fine day in hospitals and on regiments of drugstores there will be a new water of life, but only any more from a mould, and from something another».

Her words have appeared prophetical: now around the world more than hundred types of antibiotics are known. And all of them, as well as their "younger brother" penicillin, serve human health. Antibiotics happen a wide range (active concerning a wide range of bacteria) and a narrow range of action (effective concerning only specific groups of microorganisms). Uniform principles of assignment to antibiotics of names long time did not exist. But in 1965 the International committee on the nomenclature of antibiotics recommended the following rules:

  • If the chemical structure of an antibiotic is known, the name choose taking into account that class of connections which it concerns.
  • If the structure is not known, the name is given according to the name of a sort, family or an order to which the producer belongs.
  • The suffix «мицин» is appropriated only to the antibiotics synthesised by bacteria of an order of Actinomycetales.
  • Also in the name it is possible to instruct on a range or a way of action.

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