GHP August 2015

ghp August 2015 | 21 research Antimicrobial Resistance: No Solution, no Cure! Currently European AMR funding is focused on research in therapeutics, largely ignoring other areas such as transmission dynamics and the impact of the environment, understanding in which is crucial in order to reduce resistance. The gap between research funding into chronic diseases and antimicrobial resistance is large but difficult to document. However, national AMR fund- ing does exist but is relatively small and targeted. In addition, countries with low national AMR preva- lence allocate more money towards research than countries with greater needs for AMR solutions, a fact which suggests a need for greater coordination across Europe in order to fill knowledge gaps (2). The EU Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance, JPIAMR, coordinates national funding and supports collaborative action to fill existing knowledge gaps. The goal is to shape cohesive and coordinated AMR funding and actions that maximise on resources and reduce duplication of research. Mobilising existing and new resources will create a greater critical mass and attract new researchers into the AMR field. A Strategic Research Agenda (SRA), which outlines key neglected areas to tackle, guides JPIAMR and focuses research actions. More importantly, JPIAMR provides a collabora- tive platform to take the fight against AMR from awareness and statements to action by supporting European research and facilitating exchange and joint actions. Collaborating with key actors such as the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries Association (EFPIA) helps to move JPIAMR support- ed outcomes into industry. Industry participation in research calls is also encouraged and promoted to encourage working together, because researching all angles forms the foundation of the initiative. By engaging nations as members, the JPIAMR platform enables the joining of forces to instigate collaborative actions in areas of unmet needs. The shared SRA ensures that knowledge gaps are quickly identified and filled. The only way to win the AMR battle is to look at AMR in a holistic way, from diagnostics via the environ- ment to interventions, and align resources to target neglected research domains. We must also engage all relevant stakeholders in these actions to make sure to cover the entire supply chain. The goal of bringing relevant actors together in a call to action in areas of unmet needs places JPIAMR as a very unique actor, complementary to other important play- ers such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) in the AMR landscape. JPIAMR cannot address all aspects of the AMR problem, but can pave a way forward by producing new research, engaging new researchers and creating net- works that create long-term momentum for other areas in society. There is an urgent need for interdisciplinary and public-private sector partnerships to support re- search in the antimicrobial resistance area. Exchanges between industry, public health bodies and academic bodies will encourage not only sharing costs, but also coordination of the respective research activities. This is where JPIAMR will make a difference. The reality of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is that without a solution there is no cure, even to simple infections. Without ac- tion the prediction is that in 2050, only 35 years in the future, 10 million people will die each year to an astronomical cost of 100 trillion dollars to society (1). It’s clear that we need to take action to stop this from happening.