This Plant Toxin Could Help Tackle Antimicrobial Resistance

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a growing global threat. The overuse of antibiotics has produced multidrug-resistant strains, which are harder to get rid of, increasing the risk of serious illness and death. In 2019, 1.3 million people died as a direct result of AMR, more than HIV/Aids or malaria. Meanwhile, the last discovery of a new class of antibiotics was in the 1980s. Long term, the only way to prevent antimicrobial resistance is through good stewardship of antibiotics in human health, agriculture and the environment. Scientists have found a new chemical that kills bacteria and could pave the way for a potent new class of antibiotics. Albicidin is produced by a plant bacteria which causes disease in sugar cane. The bacteria use Albicidin to attack plants, but against other bacteria, Albicidin acts as an antibiotic. Watch the video to learn more about the plant toxin, Albidicin and its antimicrobial resistance properties.