Lab Canada

$7M Canada-UK collaboration to focus on antibiotic resistance research

Waterloo, ON – Two Canada-UK research teams have been funded through the Canada/UK Partnership on Antibiotic Resistance, a collaboration between the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the UK Medical Research Council. The partnership’s aim is to stimulate high quality research on innovative alternatives to existing antibiotics.

The two teams, composed of leading researchers from Canada and the UK, will receive more than $7 million over four years from CIHR and MRC. They will be working to find new targets for antibacterial drugs and new ways to prevent or stop the spread of drug resistant infections in hospitals and other health care settings.

The research teams are as follows:

– A team led by Dr Gary Dmitrienko of the University Waterloo and Professor Tim Walsh of the University of Cardiff will focus on hospital acquired infections with the aim of developing a new treatment for infections caused by bacteria resistant to beta-lactam antibiotics (e.g., penicillin, carbapenems). (Funding: $3,565,700 over four years)

– A team led by Dr Anthony Clarke of the University of Guelph and Professor Chris Dowson of the University of Warwick will focus on increasing our understanding of bacterial cell wall growth and production with the aim of identifying new targets for the development of new antibiotics. (Funding: $3,559,352 over four years)

“The UK Medical Research Council has made huge strides over the last century to stem the tide of bacterial infection”, says Professor Doreen Cantrell, chair of the Immunity and Infections Board at the Medical Research Council. “We must remain one step ahead of bacterial infections as they quickly learn how to combat drugs designed to beat them. We’re hopeful that the Canada /UK Partnership on Antibiotic Resistance will add a new momentum to the work we have been carrying out in the UK and Canada.”