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Global Challenges

A series of lectures on current issues in world politics - every first or second Wednesday of the month

In this series of lectures experts will provide a broad perspective and qualified background information on these global challenges. Each first or second Wednesday of the month a new present-day issue takes center stage in this series.
This series is a co-production of Studium Generale and the Research Centre of Leiden University College.

The discovery of antimicrobials has been a game-changer in health care by providing a novel line of defense against pathogenic micro-organisms. Antimicrobials are either isolated from nature (often produced by other bacterial or fungal species) or chemically synthesized and target processes that are essential for a bacterium to survive. Bacteria have developed strategies to counteract the effects of antimicrobials, which in some cases leads to non-susceptibility (or antimicrobial resistance). The molecular mechanisms of resistance are as diverse as the antibiotics themselves. As a result of the selective pressure by the use of antimicrobials in therapy and as a prophylactic in humans as well as livestock, the number of resistant strains of bacterial pathogens has greatly increased in recent years. In fact, certain bacterial diseases are on a rebound, after initially declining upon the introduction of specific antimicrobials. The rise in antimicrobial resistance has put us at the brink of a situation where certain infections will no longer be treatable. In this lecture, we will take you into the arms race between physician and bacterium, and show how antimicrobial resistance is tackled on a global level – from policy makers, to clinical laboratories, to researchers and drug companies – to provide context for the discussion on responsible use of antimicrobials.


Dr Wiep Klaas Smits, Assistant Professor, Department of Medical Microbiology, Center for Infectious Diseases, LUMC

Time and Venue

Thursday February 7
7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Leiden University College
Anna van Buerenplein 301
The Hague

All welcome!
Entrance is free.
Limited seats available – please register in advance !

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