INN University associate professor Rafi Ahmad receives 8 million from the Research Council's Better Health and Quality of Life (BEDREHELSE) programme for a project on antibiotic resistance.
The project is titled "AMR Diag: A Novel Diagnostic Tool for Sequence Based Prediction of Antimicrobial Resistance" and is a collaborative project between actors in Norway and India. The project has a total budget of NOK 15 million, of which 8 will be managed by Rafi Ahmad and the biotechnology community at INN University.
The World Health Organization (WHO) characterizes the emergence and spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria as a global health problem. The situation is most severe in poorer countries, where the consumption of antibiotics is high and not well regulated.
One explanation is the absence of tools to quickly determine which pathogen is causing the problems. Instead of being able to target the effort directly at the culprit, the usual solution is rather to “open fire” with broad spectrum antibiotics. This increases the risk of creating resistant microbes and bacteria.
The objective of the project for which Ahmad has received the grant, is therefore to develop a tool for real-time diagnosis of pathogens, which will be faster, cheaper and more accurate. This is crucial for reducing the use of antibiotics and thus reducing the occurrence of antibiotic resistance.
INN University acts as the secretariat for the project and other Norwegian participants are Oslo University Hospital – Ullevål, The Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Oslo University Hospital – Rikshospitalet, University Hospital of North Norway, The University of Tromsø and the Norwegian Sequencing Centre.
The Indian participants are the Indian Council of Medical Research, All India Institute of Medical Sciences and Indian Institute of Technology.
The project is one of six new projects focusing on antibiotic resistance, who received a total of NOK 39,5 million from the Research Council.