RUG going for antibiotics

The RUG is taking part in an initiative for new research into resistance to antibiotics. Public Health Minister Schippers is allocating 25 million euros to the project for the next six years.

Previously, Schippers had allocated 9 million euros to enhance the infrastructure needed for the project, which is a collaboration between the worlds of scientific research and business. The universities of Groningen and Leiden, as well as the new research institute Netherlands Centre for One Health, are responsible for distribution of the funds.

The RUG and UMCG are working on setting up the Centre for Sustainable Antimicrobials (CeSAM). This centre will gather all the existing research into the resistance to antibiotics. ‘Right now, it’s kind of scattered’, says Engel Vrieling, research manager of the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences & Biotechnology.

But the institute will also be a place for innovative research that crosses both borders and disciplines. ‘We need better antibiotics and we have to take care of the resistance problem.’

On the map

At the opening of the Netherlands Centre for One Health, Schippers promised to make an additional 16 million euros available for the research. The funding will go directly toward financing universities’ research proposals.

The Groningen-based CeSAM will further put itself on the map with a symposium organised by the KNAW and the RUG. It is called ‘Antibiotics – Now!’ and will be held in early May. Experts both foreign and domestic will discuss the urgent problem of antimicrobial resistance and the development of new antibiotics in particular.