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Global Antimicrobial Resistance Research and Development Hub 

Topics covered:

  1. Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life. Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.

 

Global Antimicrobial Resistance Research and Development Hub 

 

What to study?

For Prelims: what is antibiotic resistance and how it occurs?

For Mains: Issues and concerns associated and ways to address them.

 

Context: India joins the Global Antimicrobial Resistance Research and Development Hub as a new member.

 

About Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Research and Development (R&D) Hub:

  • Launched in May 2018 in the margins of the 71st session of the World Health Assembly, following a call from G20 Leaders in 2017.
  • Members: 16 countries, the European Commission, two philanthropic foundations and four international organisations (as observers).
  • Functions: Supports global priority setting and evidence-based decision-making on the allocation of resources for AMR R&D through the identification of gaps, overlaps and potential for cross-sectoral collaboration and leveraging in AMR R&D.
  • Secretariat: established in Berlin.
  • Finance: through grants from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Federal Ministry of Health (BMG).

 

Benefits of this partnership for India:

Opportunity to work with all partners to leverage their existing capabilities, resources and collectively focus on new R&D intervention to address drug resistant infections.

 

What is antimicrobial resistance and why is it a cause for concern?

  • AMR is the ability of a microbe to resist the effects of medication that once could successfully treat the microbe.
  • Today, the emergence and spread of antimicrobial resistance continues unabated around the world.

 

Why is the medical community worried?

  • Basically, superbugs are becoming more powerful and widespread than ever. Medical experts are afraid that we’re one step away from deadly, untreatable infections, since the mcr-1 E.coli is resistant to that last-resort antibiotic Colistin. Antibiotic-resistance is passed relatively easily from one bacteria to the next, since it is transmitted by way of loose genetic material that most bacteria have in common.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) is afraid of a post-antibiotic world, where loads of bacteria are superbugs. Already, infections like tuberculosis, gonorrhea, and pneumonia are becoming harder to treat with typical antibiotics.

 

Need of the hour:

  1. A multi-stakeholder approach, involving private industry, philanthropic groups and citizen activists is needed.
  2. Private pharmaceutical industries must take it upon themselves to distribute drugs in a responsible manner.
  3. Philanthropic charities must fund the development of new antibiotics, while citizen activists must drive awareness.
  4. These stakeholders must appreciate that the only way to postpone resistance is through improved hygiene and vaccinations.

 

Sources: pib.