: Could microbes develop resistance against Povidone Iodine solution? why or why not?

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: Could microbes develop resistance against Povidone Iodine solution? why or why not?

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In theory, it is possible for microbes to develop resistance to PVP-I or any other antiseptic solution. This could happen through a process called genetic mutation, where a small change in the microbe’s DNA leads to a change in its physiology making it resistant to the antiseptic solution . However, it is important to note that the development of resistance to PVP-I is considered to be relatively low. This is because the mechanism of action of PVP-I is not specific to any one type of microbe, but rather it works by destroying the outer membrane and cells structure of a wide range of organisms, this broad mechanism of action makes it difficult for any microbe to develop a resistance to it.

Well.. yes? Microbes could develop a resistance to many chemicals and/or anti microbial substances due to random genetic mutation. This happens quite often (mutations) bc of how often microbes reproduce, however the chances of a specific mutation forming that gives it a resistance to a certain chemical is slim. However it may have already happened, but the microbe died of by some other means before it could grown into a culture. There are limits to what a microbe can develop resistances to and it would have to be a hell of a microbe to be resistant to something a strong as povidone iodine. It’s more of a “destroys everything solution” which makes small changes like mutations unlikely to result in such a massive resistance.

Seeing your follow up questions, let’s agree that different “microbe killers” work in different ways AND that small changes (mutations) in a microbe are easier to “pop up” than large changes.

In the case of something like antibiotic medicines those usually work by causing a very specific problem, for example by stopping a microbe from absorbing a single, specific nutrient. It’s not impossible for 1 out of billions and billions of the microbe to mutate and not require that specific nutrient, or develop a way to sort of back-door the process. That’s how antibiotic resistance works. Antibiotics are very specific weapons with a very specific means of attack. Evolve (mutate) a defense on that specific attack and the antibiotic is garbage.

But in case of things like hand sanitizer, rubbing alcohol, or iodine, we’re taking about things that work via structural attack on existence of the microbe as a whole. It’s less a specific strategic weapon and more just wholesale dipping the microbe in acid, melting it away. It’s much less likely a microbe would just randomly mutate and create an entirely novel outer skin and protein structure, ready to go, day 1. That would require thousands of individual mutations all to coincide in just the right way at the right moment.

Is it impossible? No. Is it exceedingly unlikely? Defintely.