This study addresses the pressing issue of antibiotic resistance in bacterial infections and explores the potential of phage therapy as a solution. The first chapter provides an overview of phages, the emergence of antibiotic resistance, and the role of phage therapy in addressing this problem. It also identifies the technical and practical barriers that have hindered the widespread use of phage therapy and discusses possible strategies to overcome these challenges using current scientific advancements.

In the second chapter, the study examines the use of phage therapy in conjunction with antibiotics. It explores the coevolution of bacteria and phages, their impact on bacterial fitness and resistance, and the concept of coevolutionary trade-offs. The study also investigates the efficacy of phages against bacterial biofilms and explores their synergistic effects when combined with antibiotics. These findings provide compelling evidence supporting the potential widespread use of phage therapy, either alone or in combination with antibiotics, as a treatment option for antibiotic-resistant bacterial diseases.

The third chapter focuses on the ethical considerations related to phage research, specifically examining compassionate phage therapy and the barriers to conducting clinical trials. The study analyzes biological data and conducts an ethical analysis to evaluate the ethical implications of phage therapy. While the research shows promise in treating drug-resistant bacterial diseases, the study concludes that there is insufficient justification to claim that phages can be readily accessible alternatives to antibiotics from an ethical standpoint.

Lastly, the study concludes by discussing the future prospects of phage therapy and outlining the necessary approaches for its further development.


Karen Haely

Second Advisor

Stephanie Strand



Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis


© Copyright 2023 Bethel B. Bedelu