Subject: AMR eNews - Spring 2021

AMR eNews - Spring 2021
antimicrobial resistance
research & policy

global headlines

Do we need a Netflix for antibiotics?

“At home, many of us have turned to online streaming services like Netflix for our entertainment. We're happy to pay a monthly subscription, no matter how much we watch. But a subscription model like this could also be applied to tackling antibiotic resistance." —Andrew Jack, Financial Times
Financial Times: More countries must provide the right incentives to develop drugs to combat antibiotic resistance. Andrew Jack of the Financial Times explores the trend to tackle a growing global health threat by de-linking incentive payments to pharmaceutical companies from sales, offering pharma companies guaranteed income for innovative treatments. Until we get creative with new incentives, he argues, "the flames of antibiotic resistance will only continue to spread."

Alert over shortage of new drugs for ‘world’s most dangerous bacteria’

"The persistent failure to develop, manufacture, and distribute effective new antibiotics is further fuelling the impact of antimicrobial resistance and threatens our ability to successfully treat bacterial infections.” —Dr. Hanan Balkhy, WHO 
The United Nations: The World Health Organization has published a report indicating that none of the 43 antibiotics in development today sufficiently address the growing threat posed by 13 priority drug-resistant bacteria. While this static drug pipeline will leave us all dangerously exposed to infection, the report notes that the lack of new treatments will disproportionately affect young children and those living in poverty. 
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Antibiotic prescribing during the pandemic raises concern about drug resistance

“In most cases, antibiotics were given to COVID-19 patients prior to confirmation of a bacterial infection." —Research conducted by the Pew Charitable Trusts.
STAT: Amid rising worries over antibiotic resistance, a new study suggests drugs were overprescribed to patients during the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic, raising fresh concerns about efforts to avoid the spread of superbugs. In 96% of COVID cases, antibiotics were given to patients before a bacterial infection was confirmed. To wit, a first antibiotic was prescribed at the time of admission or within the first 48 hours of hospitalization, which implies a degree of guesswork.
canadian responses

Antimicrobial resistance named key action item in Canada's 2021 Federal Budget

"By 2050, it is estimated that as many as 396,000 lives in Canada could be lost to antimicrobial resistance if the phenomenon is not addressed." —Budget 2021
Government of Canada: Budget 2021 proposes to provide $28.6 million over five years, beginning in 2021-22, with $5.7 million per year ongoing, to the Public Health Agency of Canada, Health Canada, and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to help address antimicrobial resistance. Investments will support efforts to prevent the inappropriate use of antimicrobials and expand efforts to monitor the emergence of antimicrobial resistance in Canada. 

Five days of antibiotics fine for children with pneumonia

“The dramatic increase in antimicrobial resistance in the world today is driven by overuse of antibiotics – which has only worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic." —Dr. Jeffrey Pernica, McMaster University
McMaster University: New research from McMaster University has proven that a five-day course of high-dose amoxicillin will do just as well as a 10-day course for children six months to 10 years old with common pneumonia. The study, published JAMA Pediatrics, found that 85.7% of those who received the short course of antibiotics and 84.1% of those who received the longer course of medication were cured two to three weeks later. 

How antibiotic resistance has an impact on future diseases

“Despite having a low profile compared to some viral diseases such as COVID-19, antibiotic and antimicrobial resistance can indeed be described as a pandemic. In the long term, its economic and public health toll is likely to be much worse than the current crisis." —Martin Chenal, Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique (INRS) 
Global NewsIn contrast to the new viral pandemics that regularly make headlines, this resistance plague does not concern a single pathogen but rather a multitude of viruses, parasites, fungi, and especially bacteria. It’s a real race against time. Ultimately, this problem could lead us into a post-antibiotic era, where the slightest injury or surgery would constitute a significant risk of dangerous infection.
learning resources
The Council of Canadian Academies (2019): When Antibiotics Fail
G20 (Prepared by OECD, WHO, FAO and OIE) (2017): Tackling Antimicrobial Resistance - Ensuring Sustainable R&D
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2019): Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2019
Jim O'Neill, Commissioned by the UK Prime Minister (2016): 
Tackling Drug-resistant Infections Globally: Report & Recommendations

reports & publications
Ancient Antibiotics, Ancient

While therapeutic use of antibiotics and the inevitable selection of resistance is a modern phenomenon, these molecules and the genetic determinants of resistance were in use by environmental microbes long before humans discovered them.
Exploiting the Achilles’ Heel of Iron Dependence in Resistant Bacteria

Iron withdrawal can enhance microbial sensitivity to various antibiotics and suppress outgrowth of antibiotic-exposed resistant survivors. Thus, iron dependence of antibiotic-resistant microbes represents an Achilles’ heel that can be exploited.
Rapid microwave-based method for the preparation of antimicrobial lignin-capped silver nanoparticles active against MDR bacteria

Due to the increasing inability of antibiotics to treat multidrug-resistant bacteria, metal and metal oxide nanoparticles have been gaining interest as antimicrobial agents. 
Prevalence of antimicrobial resistance genes and its association with restricted antimicrobial use in food-producing animals

This meta-analysis summarizes the effects of interventions reducing antimicrobial use in food-producing animals on the prevalence of AMR genes in bacteria. 
who we are

The Canadian Anti-infective Innovation Network (CAIN) is a consortium of over 80 leaders, researchers, clinicians, and policymakers from Canadian universities, companies, governments, and not-for-profit organizations committed to addressing the global threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). CAIN members span human and animal health sectors, reflecting the fact that AMR is a One Health issue.

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The Canadian Anti-infective Innovation Network (CAIN) AMR eNews is proudly sponsored by the David Braley Centre for Antibiotic Discovery (DBCAD)For all communications, including any questions, comments, or suggestions that you may have regarding the AMR newsletter, please contact DBCAD Communications Officer Blake Dillon at
The Canadian Anti-infective
Innovation Network (CAIN)

University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC

The David Braley Centre for
Antibiotic Discovery
McMaster University
Hamilton, Ontario

The Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research
McMaster University
Hamilton, Ontario

McGill Interdisciplinary Initiative in Infection and Immunity (MI4)
McGill University

Montreal, Quebec

McMaster University, 1280 Main St W, Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4L8, Canada
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