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UK spearheads efforts to combat rising threat of antibiotic resistance

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g4418 (Published 03 July 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g4418
  1. Ingrid Torjesen
  1. 1London, UK

The UK government and UK based charities are taking the lead in efforts to tackle the growing threat of antibiotic resistance through the development of new antibiotics and smarter use of those already in existence.

Over time bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics, and this process has been accelerated by the overuse of antibiotics for minor infections. In addition, drug companies have not prioritised the development of new antibiotics because the process is costly and any new drugs will generate limited profits because they will be used only as a last resort yet still have a limited patent. The World Health Organization has warned that, if action is not taken, the world will enter a post-antibiotic era, where common infections become fatal once again.1

On Wednesday, Prime Minister David Cameron announced that …

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