Published: Tue, November 14, 2017
Medicine | By Brett Sutton

Use antibiotics effectively to reduce drug-resistance

Use antibiotics effectively to reduce drug-resistance

On November 7, 2017, World Health Organization issued a statement recommending that farmers and the food industry stop using antibiotics routinely to promote growth and prevent disease in healthy animals. This year's theme: Seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional before taking antibiotics.

"We are all responsible for preserving the effectiveness of the only effective antibiotics we have left, whether we prescribe, dispense, provide advice or need to take them", concludes Soko. The 2017 posters have been published on this site for use around the world as a campaign resource.

Senior author Professor David Grainger said: "We investigated a gene found in bacteria that is involved in resistance to multiple antibiotics".

Medically important antimicrobials that are not now used in food production should not be used in the future in food production including in food-producing animals or plants.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), "U.S".

Since they were first marketed in the 1940s, antibiotics have helped to revolutionize modern healthcare, offering cures to previously untreatable infections.


The WHO said their guidelines contribute directly to the aims of the Global action plan on antimicrobial resistance adopted by the World Health Assembly in 2015 and the Declaration of the High-Level Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on Antimicrobial Resistance, adopted in 2016.

Using novel experimental approaches, involving whole genome DNA sequencing never previously applied in this area of research, the team identified mechanisms or "strategies" that bacteria use to protect themselves from antibiotics.

In some countries, approximately 80 per cent of total consumption of medically important antibiotics is in the animal sector, largely for growth promotion in healthy animals. Where they can be bought for human or animal use without a prescription, the emergence and spread of resistance is made worse.

Imperial staff and students will have an opportunity to hand over any unused antibiotics this week as part of an annual amnesty.

It remains to be seen whether and to what extent WHO's recommendations will impact US policy in this arena going forward.

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