On April 13 2015, Cathy McLeod, Canadian Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health announced that Canada is taking part in six projects , which were made possible as part of the Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance. This research will help ensure Canadian doctors have the tools they need to treat bacterial infections now and in the future.“Innovation is one of the key components of our Government’s framework for addressing the global health issue of antimicrobial resistance. Today’s announcement shows how Canadian researchers are contributing at the international level. Their work will benefit Canadians and people around the world,” said Cathy McLeod, Canadian M.P. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health.The Government of Canada is investing $4 million to support researchers at the University of British Columbia, McMaster University and Université Laval. These Canadian researchers will work with international partners on the six projects , that focus on identifying new targets for antimicrobial drug development, new approaches to treating drug-resistant bacterial infections, and methods for preserving the effectiveness of existing antibiotics.For example, Dr. Natalie Strynadka, a researcher at UBC and the Canada Research Chair in Antibiotic Discovery and Medicine, will contribute to two projects, including one that aims to find new molecules to prevent the inactivation of beta-lactam antibiotics such as penicillin.Together with this statement, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) issued a fact sheet, which can be downloaded here 

Quick Facts 

  • Antimicrobial resistance develops when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change so that the medicines, such as antibiotics, used to treat these germs become less effective and sometimes do not work at all. While antimicrobial resistance can happen naturally, a major contributor is the overuse and misuse of antibiotics and other antimicrobial medicines.
  • The Government of Canada released its Antimicrobial Resistance and Use in Canada: A Federal Framework for Action on October 24, 2014.
  • The Federal Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance and Use, released on March 31, 2015, builds on the Framework by identifying concrete steps that will be undertaken by the Government of Canada in the areas of stewardship, surveillance, and innovation.
  • The Government of Canada is a major supporter of research related to antimicrobial resistance, investing more than $143 million through CIHR since 2006.
  • Through CIHR, Canada is a member of the international Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance. CIHR is investing $4 million to support six projects involving Canadian researchers under this initiative.

    From left to right:  Dr. John Hepburn, Dr. Charles Thompson, Dr. Marc Ouellette, Dr. Horatio Bach, PS McLeod, Dr. Raymond Andersen,  Dr. Natalie Strynadka, Dr. Julian Davies. Photo credit Martin Dee/UBC

    From left to right: Dr. John Hepburn, Dr. Charles Thompson, Dr. Marc Ouellette, Dr. Horatio Bach, PS McLeod, Dr. Raymond Andersen,
    Dr. Natalie Strynadka, Dr. Julian Davies. Photo credit Martin Dee/UBC