Researcher ORCID Identifier


Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Brian Duistermars

Reader 2

Sarah Budischak

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Terms of Use for work posted in Scholarship@Claremont.


Antimicrobial resistance has been linked to millions of human infections annually, especially in hospitals. Hospital infection control programs are strained due to the increasing number of cases that have become harder to treat. The causes of antibiotic resistance are complex and can affect populations worldwide. Many efforts have been made to understand antibiotic-resistant mechanisms and plan for interventions to stop the spread of resistant bacteria. To meet the challenge, understanding the history of antimicrobial resistance is integral to finding solutions, especially in standard bacterial modes of resistance, as seen with β-lactamase. β-lactamases are the principal mechanisms of bacteria resistant to β-lactam antibiotics, a very common antibiotic treatment. In recent years the number and variety of new β-lactamases detected have risen at an alarming rate in response to the clinical use of novel classes of β-lactam antibiotics. This paper reviews the structure and evolution of β-lactamases and addresses the global situation in which action is needed.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.