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The Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development (AIGHD) and the UvA Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) joined forces to better understand antimicrobial resistance (AMR) patterns and key drivers of AMR emergence. The collaboration resulted in a new research project, granted by the Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance (JPIAMR).

Principal Investigator: Prof. Constance Schultsz

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is increasing worldwide, and surveillance activities play a key role in informing policies to contain AMR. Moreover, resistance to new antibiotics is emerging ever quicker after their introduction onto the market, rapidly reducing the effectiveness of even last-resort antibiotics. As such, the sustainable introduction of a novel class antibiotic can only be achieved when accompanied by timely and informed surveillance and stewardship strategies. Affordable methodologies and tools to estimate the extent of national and local AMR are urgently needed to intelligently prioritise surveillance efforts, especially in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

The Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development (AIGHD) and the UvA Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) have successfully put together an interdisciplinary team of researchers that will address this topic. The consortium has recently received a 290k grant from the Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance (JPIAMR) in its 9th call on Diagnostics and Surveillance, which funds joint transnational research projects addressing the development of diagnostic and surveillance tools, technologies and methods to detect AMR.

Combining clinical, microbiological, epidemiological, and computational modelling expertise in one consortium, the project aims to develop advanced data science and machine learning techniques for diagnostics and surveillance of AMR at the global and (sub-)national scale, and multi-scale holistic dynamic network models at the local scale. Ultimately, the team aims to facilitate the sustainable potential future introduction of novel class and last-resort antimicrobial drugs. This will be illustrated in the specific case of Neisseria gonorrhoeae.

This new research project, named MAGIcIAN, involves partners from Italy, Spain, Latvia and India.