Antimicrobial resistance is a threat to global public health
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is the ability of a microorganism to stop an antimicrobial drug from working against it. The most commonly known antimicrobials are antibiotics, which kill or stop the growth of bacteria.
AMR represents a serious and growing threat to human and animal health worldwide. A number of infections, such as pneumonia, tuberculosis and gonorrhoea, are becoming increasingly difficult to treat owing to the widespread emergence of an array of antibiotic resistance mechanisms.
Without effective antibiotics for the prevention and treatment of infections, modern medical procedures such as general surgery, organ transplantation and cancer chemotherapy could become high risk procedures.
Responses to antibiotic resistance
Global awareness of the severity of the problem is urgently needed, and important actors, such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) have already set up large campaigns in order to raise public awareness. The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) has invested heavily in combating AMR, and the AMR Accelerator Programme complements and builds on the achievements of IMI’s New Drugs for Bad Bugs Programme, which also focuses on AMR.