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In its recent annual report on global risks, the World Economic Forum (WEF) concluded that “arguably the greatest risk . . . to human health comes in the form of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. We live in a bacterial world where we will never be able to stay ahead of the mutation curve. A test of our resilience is how far behind the curve we allow ourselves to fall.”1
Traditional practices in infection control, antibiotic stewardship, and new antibiotic development are cornerstones of society's approach to combating resistance and must be continued. But the WEF report underscores the facts that antibiotic resistance and the collapse of the antibiotic research-and-development pipeline continue to worsen despite our ongoing efforts on all these fronts. If we're to develop countermeasures that have lasting effects, new ideas that complement traditional approaches will be needed./.../