Life at the extreme levels of air pollution

By Louise Corscadden, University of Leicester

Recent news headlines have highlighted the rise of extreme air pollution levels globally, from Delhi to London. It has become hard to ignore the thought that the very air we breathe can harm us. The World Health Organisation estimates that 7 million people annually will die a premature death due to air pollution and the number is likely to rise as pollution levels increase.

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What would a year without antibiotics look like?

By Brendan Gilmore, Queen’s University Belfast

Grim? Certainly. Apocalyptic? Probably not. Antibiotics have been one of the most transformational discoveries in mankind’s history. Few drugs can make the impressive claims that antibiotics, which we have taken for granted, can. Antibiotics have slashed infant mortality and contributed to prolonging life and increasing life expectancy. Today antibiotics underpin the cornerstones of modern clinical medicine. Antibiotics save lives.

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New approaches to the antibiotic resistance problem

By Derry K Mercer, Principal Scientist at Novabiotics Ltd & member of the Biochemical Society Policy Advisory Panel

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Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus

From cradle to grave, antimicrobials have become pivotal in safeguarding the overall health of human societies. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is one of the biggest threats to global health today. Recently, at the United Nations, World Heads of State committed to taking a broad, coordinated approach to address the root causes of AMR across multiple sectors, especially human health, animal health and agriculture, only the fourth time that a health issue has been taken up by the UN General Assembly. According to the O’Neill report, it is estimated that 700,000 people die annually from drug resistant infections. In the US alone, more than two million infections a year are caused by bacteria resistant to at least one antibiotic, costing the US health system more than US$20 billion in excess costs annually. Continue reading “New approaches to the antibiotic resistance problem”