StoriesPart of Future Humans

Drugs, space travel and the ‘age of promise’

In 1951, space-age drug Terramycin promised a utopian future: children who would once have died could now dream of becoming astronauts, crops were protected from light and animals grew to twice the size. But the drive to use such wonder drugs for everything actually caused a modern nightmare of drug resistance.

Words by Alice White

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About the author

Photograph of Alice White

Alice White


Alice is a digital editor and Wikimedian for Wellcome Collection. Before joining Wellcome she researched frogs, moustaches, psychiatry in the Second World War, and British science fiction fans.