The Nature Conference on Countering Antimicrobial Resistance held in Beijing in May 2018 brought together speakers and delegates intent on taking on AMR from a range of different angles. If you were fortunate enough to be able to join us for the meeting, you will already know that this was a really special event, with talks ranging from across the spectrum of topics relating to antibiotic resistance.
In two packed days we covered AMR policy and the state of the drug pipeline, resistance evolution and mobility, epidemiology and pathogenomics, resistance in the clinic, antibiotic discovery and development and alternative approaches.
Among the great science presented, there were some truly sobering views of the impact of resistance in the clinic & community, especially in low and middle income countries. Yet there was also optimism that advances in tracking, hygiene measures and antibiotic stewardship are starting to provide some of the answers for how we might be able to at least slow the spread of resistance. Similarly with greater interest from policy makers and funders, in the academic lab it seems that we have turned a corner and far greater emphasis is being placed on all aspects of AMR, in particular in identifying potential new leads and compunds. Work remains to be done to capitalize on the new focus on AMR by greatly increasing appropriate incentives (whether push or pull) for pharmaceutical companies to get back in the game to take new antibiotic drugs from preclinical stages, through trials to approval, but the right people are clearly putting much thought into these issues.
Several of the speakers at this great event have asked that we provide a forum to continue the conversation and help to make sure that the excitement of this meeting and the high quality of information presented not be lost.
So welcome to this room, dedicated to the meeting. We will post material from our speakers and more here, we hope that you find it useful in deciding how you might help to combat antimicrobial resistance.