Edinburgh Infectious Diseases
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Antimicrobial resistance research in Edinburgh

Research across Edinburgh Infectious Diseases is contributing solutions to beat the global crisis in antimicrobial resistance.

Testing antibiotic sensitivity of Pseudomonas aeruginosa
Testing antibiotic sensitivity of Pseudomonas aeruginosa


Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is increasingly recognised as one of the greatest threats to global healthcare with substantial societal and economic impact evidenced by reports and action plans published by major national and international bodies, including the World Health Organisation.

AMR is one of the most important issues currently facing the world, and we recognise that Edinburgh scientists and clinicians have a key role to play in addressing this truly global challenge.

Professor Ross Fitzgerald, Roslin InstituteDirector of Edinburgh Infectious Diseases

As examples to tackle AMR, UK launched the O'Neill Commission, the US launched a National Strategy on Combatting Antibiotic-resistant Bacteria in 2014 and India published the Chennai Declaration: A roadmap to tackle the challenge of antimicrobial resistance.

Chennai Declaration (India)

National Strategy on Combatting Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria (United States)

The O'Neill Commission (United Kingdom)

WHO Antimicrobial Resistance:  Global Report on Surveillance 2014

There is no magic bullet for solving the AMR crisis, no single measure will be sufficient. What is needed is an integrated, multi-disciplinary, science-led approach that addresses issues ranging from diagnostics to drug development to global governance. This is also a One Health problem, requiring coordination across the human, animal and environmental sectors. The University of Edinburgh is exceptionally well placed to meet this challenge; we have world class researchers covering many of the disciplines relevant to AMR. Working together, we believe we can make a real difference in this hugely important area.

Professor Mark Woolhouse, Centre for Immunity, Infection and EvolutionEdinburgh Infectious Diseases AMR Champion

New UK five year action plan for AMR in 2019

In January 2019 the UK Government published their 20 year vision for addressing AMR, and their action plan for 2019 - 2024.  

Find details of both policy papers below.

In Edinburgh we are pursuing five main research themes

We have recently carried out a strategic review of AMR research across Edinburgh Infectious Diseases, and are now moving forward in four key AMR-related research areas, which have existing and potential for excellence in Edinburgh. 

We have also identified an AMR Champion and theme leaders to promote our science, co-ordinate activities and leading funding applications to continue developing our activities. 

The themes and their leaders are described below.

Global and local epidemiology of AMR

Further information on epidemiology theme

Rapid diagnostics of more effective use of antibiotics

Further information on diagnostics theme

Mechanisms of biology, evolution and physics underpinning antibiotic resistance

Further information underpinning mechanisms

Antibiotic alternatives and vaccine development

Further information on antibiotic alternatives theme

Antimicrobial Governance and Stewardship

Further information on governance theme