Saturday , March 6 2021

The Arctic, another territory that has already reached resistance to antibiotics

After taking 40 samples of the polar soil, researchers found a protein that had been discovered in India for years before and which causes bacteria to withstand these medications. You still do not know exactly how you could get there.

Throughout 2018 this newspaper published several news related to one of the most disturbing problems of public health: the resistance that antibiotics are acquiring bacteria. "The World Health Organization warns of the high antibiotic resistance index," "Resistance to antibiotics could cause 2.4 million deaths in the next 30 years," "Pharmacists are quitting Making antibiotics "were some of the titles that carried these articles and summarized the complexity of this issue. (Read An Education Minister, the new president of the pharmaceutical corporation)

To these messages, which usually seem apocalyptic, you have just added a news that the scientific community is worried. In a work published in the magazine Environmental InternationalA team of researchers showed that these "super powers" of bacteria are expanding at a very high rate that no one was expecting. (Read the confused case of a medicine for which Colombia paid almost $ 9 billion)

The example with which they explain it is as follows: after taking samples of soil in the Arctic Archipelago of Svalbard in 2013, they found a protein that in 2008 had first appeared in a New Delhi hospital ( India). NDM-1, as it was called by seeds, causes bacteria to become resistant to antibiotics that should fight them.

Carlos Pedrós-Alió, a research professor at the Institute of Sciences of the Sea of ​​Barcelona (CSIC), summed up with these words in the newspaper El País de España, worrying about this finding : "This shows how easy it is dispersal. The world we live in is very small for bacteria."

What it refers to is that it was not enough for a few years because this protein was dispersed throughout much of the world. Today the records indicate that it is already present in more than 100 countries.

To discover that the Arctic also had become a territory with the presence of the NDM-1, the authors took 40 samples of polar soil. In total, they found 131 antibiotic resistance genes.

How to get there? Answering this question is difficult, but the researchers have several hypotheses. One of them indicates that the culprits could be faeces of animals or humans who visited this territory. It is also possible that you have transported in bacteria that some birds can take to your legs or their feathers.

Faced with the uncertainty, Clare McCann of the University of Newcastle and the principal author of the study have a recommendation that could help clarify the doubts. As he told El Pais, we must understand how they are transmitting these bacteria through water and looking for more effective ways to control this transmission. One of the most conducive routes is to improve waste management and water quality on a global scale.

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