The story of Penicillin is probably the most famous of all accidental discoveries. In 1928, the Scottish scientist and Nobel Laurette Alexander Fleming was working on a certain strain of bacteria called Staphylococci.

He went on a vacation. On returning he found that one of his glass culture dishes had been left open outside! It had got contaminated by a blue-green mold, with a visible growth!

He threw it away! He later noticed that the Staphylococcus bacteria were no longer growing in the areas surrounding the molds.

After doing further research Fleming published his results and findings. But it was not given the importance it deserved and Penicillin was not used in treatment of infections for almost twenty years!

In 1945, it was found that Penicillin can be produced in an industrial scale. It was then penicillin was used to treat people with bacterial infections.

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Penicillin is made from Penicillium mould called Penicillium Notatum. Several derivatives of Penicillin have been formulated since and they are used in treating bacteria spread over a wide range!

Visalakshi Ramani