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European Biopharmaceutical Review

The Balancing Act of Antimicrobial Technologies

Jean de La Fontaine said that one often meets his fate on the path he takes to avoid it. Fate is perhaps too deterministic a word for the scientific phenomenon of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), but there is growing concern that the drive to eliminate harmful microbes from human environments could be having the opposite effect.

So far, scientists have only managed to induce resistance to antimicrobial technologies in the laboratory, but it will become a possibility in the wild if antimicrobial technologies are used irresponsibly.

The potential for ‘over-protecting’ ourselves by overusing antimicrobial technologies has likely been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and, in an ironic twist of fate, the desire to avoid dangerous disease could in fact make it inevitable. While the pandemic presents a clear need for antimicrobial technologies and more efficient sanitation, a careful balance will need to be found, to prevent a catastrophic turn of events.

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India Toomey is an Editor and Copywriter at IDTechEx. She covers a broad range of topics, from life science to haptics and electric vehicles. At IDTechEx, India manages the editing and publishing of analyst reports, company profiles, and premium articles. Recent works include No Lives at Steak: How Will Your Food be Made in the Future? and Your Kids Won’t Learn to Drive, and Here’s Why.

Dr Nadia Tsao is a Principal Analyst at IDTechEx where she has been driving the company’s research in life science. Her research spans a range of topics within healthcare, including digital health, bioelectronic medicine, and tissue engineering. At IDTechEx, Nadia has authored research reports and articles, delivered custom consulting projects to multibillion-dollar companies, taught masterclasses, and co-organised the company’s Healthcare Sensor Innovations conference and exhibition.
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