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Rights: The University of Waikato
Published 27 November 2007
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If you're going to use one type of bacteria to fight another, you've got to make sure you understand any side effects.

Transcript

Cathy Buntting: What do you think of the idea of putting bacteria in your mouth deliberately to fight off the other bad bacteria?

Student: Pretty strange.

Cathy Buntting: It does sound pretty strange, doesn't it? But it seems be working pretty well.

Student: Clever, that it kind of works.

Cathy Buntting: Yeah, it’s extremely clever.

Student: Giving yourself a bacteria to get rid of another bacteria – will it have some side effects?

Cathy Buntting: I guess those are some really important questions that scientists need to think about. Are the good BLIS bacteria going to have side effects, exactly like you said? Because you can't replace one problem with another. But the other interesting thing, I think, is that it just reminds us that not all bacteria are bad, and that we can find a whole heap of good bacteria that we might be able to use to help humans.