Rutgers professionals are now available to give their comments on the legislation that would eventually name Streptomyces griseus as the New Jerseys’ states microbe. Gov. Phil Murphy is considering the bill from New Jersey that wants to have an officially recognized state microbe. This would make New Jersey the second state to do so. Oregon was the first.
The New Jersey Senate voted today and had an absolute majority of 34-0 to approve the bill (S-1729), and it also had full support from the state assembly where the vote count was 76-0.
Scientists from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, discovered in 1943, the capacity of a soil-based bacterium, S. griseus, to cure tuberculosis. This discovery made at the Agricultural Experiment Station, New Jersey defined Rutgers’ position as a leader in research related to antibiotics and has since saved countless, precious lives around the world.
Graduate students Elizabeth Bugie and Albert Schatz along with their professor, Selman Waksman found out that S. griseus forms an antibiotic, which they decided to name streptomycin. They also found that the Streptomycin kills the bacteria that were causing diseases like cholera, tuberculosis, typhoid, and dysentery, all of which were dead set against to penicillin. Streptomycin was declared the world’s first practical and broad-spectrum antibiotic. Streptomycin was said to be able to kill a greater variety of pathogens than the penicillin did. Professor Selman Waksman for this discovery along with his students was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine or Physiology in 1952. Selman Waksman is the namesake of ‘Waksman Institute of Microbiology’ of Rutgers. Besides this, Professor Waksman is also the namesake of the Waksman Museum located at the ‘School of Environmental and Biological Sciences’ which is the laboratory where he discovered Streptomycin along with his students.