Health Leaders Gather To Tackle Antibiotic Crisis

Leading economist Lord Jim O’Neill has been confirmed as the keynote speaker at a flagship conference focused on finding new ways to tackle the global threat to public health posed by antibiotic resistance.

The event, BioInfect 2015, takes places at the Alderley Park conference centre in Cheshire on November 10th, and features policy makers, public health experts, academics and senior executives from the pharmaceutical and animal health industries.

Lord O’Neill is head of the review established by the UK government to look at the economic impact of antimicrobial resistance.  His team has already set out initial proposals to overhaul the global antibiotics pipeline over the next ten years, with final recommendations due by the summer of 2016. The O’Neill Review has also calculated that failure to tackle resistance to superbugs could cause 10 million extra deaths a year and cost up to $100 trillion by 2050.

Dr Geoff Davison, CEO of Bionow, the life science membership body for the North of England said: “The diminishing effectiveness of antibiotics threatens the prevention and treatment of an ever-increasing range of infections. It represents such an unparalleled threat to global public health that in order to address it requires coordinated global action across all government sectors and society as a whole. We very much welcome the attendance of Jim O’Neill and his team, who are in the vanguard of the UK’s response to the issue, along with leading authorities in human and animal health from around the world.”

Dr Neil Murray, CEO of Redx Pharma Plc, the largest UK biotech working on the development of new antibiotics, commented: “The World Health Organisation has been calling for action for years to combat the growing problem of resistance. Events like BioInfect have an important role to play in helping share knowledge, foster collaboration and inspire the level of innovation required to tackle this multi-faceted problem. The O’Neill Review has given this issue the priority it deserves and it is down to the industry and public at large to meet the challenge of implementing the Review’s recommendations.”

Hosted by the industry group Bionow, BioInfect 2015 is now in its third year.  Supported by the drug development consultancy Boyds, Shore Capital, Manchester Science Partnerships and Redx Pharma, the conference contributes to setting the international agenda regarding a new global health architecture, with new laws, regulations, governance mechanisms, and tools to get the issue under control.

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