New trends on antimicrobial resistance A review in the framework of global health security

[Speaker] Solange C. Alves Carvalho:1
[Co-author] Paulo C. Cruz:2, Julio M. Gouveia-Carvalho:3
1:Clinical Pharmacology, Hospital Santa Maria, Lisbon, Portugal, 2:Laboratorio Militar, Portugal, 3:Laboratorio de Defesa Biologica, Portugal


In recent years, antimicrobial resistance (AMR) has been considered one of the most important issues in the framework of global health security. AMR represents a growing threat to effective treatment of an ever-increasing range of infections caused by bacteria, parasites, viruses and fungi. AMR results in reduced efficacy of antimicrobial drugs, making the treatment of patients difficult, costly or even impossible. The magnitude of the problem worldwide, its impact on human and animal health and the impact on costs for the most relevant sectors and in wider society are still largely unknown.

The use of antibiotics is the single most important factor leading to AMR and are among the most commonly prescribed drugs used in human medicine and also commonly used in food animals to prevent, control, and treat diseases as to promote the growth of food-producing animals. Other major factor in the growth of antibiotic resistance is the spread of resistant strains of bacteria from person to person, or from the non-human sources in the environment, including food.


This work reviews the most recent approaches to AMR worldwide, from national to global action plans, strategic partnerships, multisectoral systems and one health approaches, risk assessment, monitoring of antimicrobial usage and resistance in humans and animals. These are related to the International Health Regulation and the definition of priority lists of antibiotic-resistant bacteria to help in selecting the research and development of new and effective antibiotic treatments.


There is a wide range of mutual reinforcing approaches that address the issue of AMR. On a broad perspective, these approaches, considering health risks at the human, animal, and environmental interfaces requires strong partnerships among entities as international organizations, governments, private sector, civil society, and donors, and must rely on a solid coordinated action.


AMR is one of the most important issues in the framework of global health security. The knowledge about the most recent approaches to AMR worldwide is an important base for the conduction and the definition of strategies in the field of the research and development contributing for the selection of new and effective antibiotic treatments.

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