Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A new superbug that is resistant to even the most powerful antibiotics has entered British hospitals

Experts say bacteria that make an enzyme called NDM-1 have traveled back with NHS patients who went abroad to countries like India and Pakistan for treatments such as cosmetic surgery. Tight surveillance and new drugs are needed says Lancet Infectious Diseases. NDM-1 can exist inside different bacteria, like E.coli, and it makes them resistant to one of the most powerful groups of antibiotics - carbapenems. These are generally reserved for use in emergencies and to combat hard-to-treat infections caused by other multi-resistant bacteria. And experts fear NDM-1 could now jump to other strains of bacteria that are already resistant to many other antibiotics. Ultimately, this could produce dangerous infections that would spread rapidly from person to person and be almost impossible to treat. At least one of the NDM-1 infections that researchers have analyzed was resistant to all known antibiotics. Similar infections have been seen in the United States, Canada, Australia and the Netherlands and international researchers say that NDM-1 could become a major global health problem.


Scientists find new superbug spreading from India

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