Uppsala University to invest in new Antibiotics Centre

2 June 2015

An Uppsala Antibiotics Centre is to be created at Uppsala University. This was announced by Deputy Vice-Chancellor Anders Malmberg at the opening of the Uppsala Health Summit conference. The goal is for this interdisciplinary centre to be a regional, national and international knowledge resource and forum in the area of antibiotic resistance.

‘We want to assume responsibility and take up the urgent challenge in this matter, which is so pressing for humankind. Here, we have a unique capacity to do it with the interdisciplinary approach that’s required,’ says Anders Malmberg, Deputy Vice-Chancellor.

Uppsala Health Summit is a superb opportunity for us to sound out international experts in the area before we get the ball rolling,’ Malmberg adds. ‘Uppsala University is ready to pursue the work further after this conference, in research, in education and in knowledge dissemination.’

During the spring, an extensive survey of expertise in the area of antibiotic resistance has been carried out at Uppsala University. It has shown that unique cross-sectoral competence, national and international, is available here. By creating a Centre, the University intends to strengthen the area further. There is a broad internal consensus on this venture, and funds have been allocated at several levels in the University.

‘Uppsala offers a tremendous range of skills and experience in the area of antibiotic resistance — not only within but outside the University as well. And that’s not just in research but in entrepreneurial activities. And, not least, publicity and opinion formation are under way through the Uppsala-based international network ReAct (Action on Antibiotic Resistance),’ says Stellan Sandler, Vice-Rector for the Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy.

The Uppsala Antibiotic Centre will seek to achieve the best possible synergy effects between cutting-edge and wide-ranging research. It is intended to be not only a knowledge centre for decision-makers and other sectors of society, but also to have a strong focus on training a new generation of researchers with a comprehensive view of the issue of antibiotic resistance.

At Uppsala University, relevant research in all the disciplines concerned is in progress, as are several major research projects supported by the EU. Besides strong basic research in pharmaceuticals, microbiology and antibiotic resistance, world-class research is also being conducted in such fields as diagnostics, new economic models, law, zoonoses (diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans), clinical research, ethics, global health, sustainable development, behaviour and learning. Major EU projects in the area of antibiotics, ENABLE and DRIVE-AB, are being led from Uppsala University. In and around Uppsala, key expertise is also available at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), the National Veterinary Institute (SVA), the National Food Agency (SLV), the Medical Products Agency (LMV) and several companies.