Conversation topic Wednesday 5th October 2016

Penicillin: breaking the mould

Alice and Neil discuss penicillin, the so-called wonder drug discovered in 1928 by Alexander Fleming. They talk about Neil’s sore toe, mouldy coffee mugs, and why drug companies should be looking at ways to extend the lifespan of antibiotics and find new ones.

This week’s question

How many lives penicillin has saved since its first use as a medicine in 1942? Is it…

a) 20 million?

b) 200 million?

c) 2 billion?

You’ll hear the answer at the end of the programme.