Common Human Antibiotic Can Heal Coral Diseases – 95% Success Rate With Amoxicillin

DM

Diseases continue to be a major threat to coral reef health, but a new study by Florida researchers reveals how a common antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections in humans is showing great promise. A recent outbreak of an infectious disease called stony coral tissue loss has affected 20 different stony coral species. First discovered in 2014 in Miami-Dade County, the disease has spread throughout Florida’s Coral Reef and into parts of the Caribbean. In treating disease-affected Montastraea cavernosa coral colonies (the Great Star Coral widely found in the Atlantic), the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute of Florida Atlantic University found that an amoxicillin treatment had a 95 percent success rate at healing individual disease lesions. Though, it did not necessarily prevent treated colonies from developing new lesions over time, preserving M. cavernosa colonies is important due to its role as a dominant reef builder in Florida’s Coral Reef.

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