This video segment adapted from A Science Odyssey tells how two scientists, Howard Florey and Ernst Chain, used the research findings of Alexander Fleming to turn a natural compound, penicillin, into an effective treatment for bacterial infections. Their tests in mice and later in human patients demonstrated penicillin's ability to cure such infections. After U.S. drug companies figured out how to mass-produce penicillin, its reputation as a "miracle drug" was established. Spurred by public support, medical research and development consequently took off.
This media asset was adapted from the A Science Odyssey: Matters of Life and Death.