MRC support for AMR research
Given the globalisation of travel and the increase in bacterial resistance there is a pressing need to develop new therapeutic approaches and diagnostics. Our recent AMR-relevant research portfolio includes 57 awards made between 2011/12 and 2015/16, with combined commitment of £51 million (Figure 1). The past two years have seen substantial increases in both awards made and amounts funded due to a new dedicated AMR cross-council initiative launched in 2014. This ‘war cabinet’ for the fight against AMR has received support from all seven research councils and the Wellcome Trust alongside additional awards made via other funding streams, including the European Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance (JPI AMR, launched in 2012) and the Biomedical Catalyst.
The MRC has long supported research to understand the mechanisms of bacterial action. This support has increased over the past five years to address the rising challenge. New collaborations with China, India and South Africa (all supported by the MRC via the Newton Fund) announced in 2016 will provide a further £23 million of funding to support AMR studies for some time.