Superbugs and You

True Stories from Scientists and Patients around the World

A Podcast Series

Infections caused by highly drug resistant bacteria or superbugs” are becoming more and more common, making antimicrobial resistance one of the world’s greatest health threats.

This podcast series will address this global crisis through conversations with patients, clinicians, and researchers to discover how superbugs are affecting people and healthcare systems globally. It will highlight actions that the average citizen can take today to make sure the drugs we already have stay effective, in order to protect ourselves, our families, and our communities.

This podcast series is co-developed by CIDRAP and Antimicrobial Resistance Fighter Coalition.

Episode Nine: Phage Against the Routine: Resistant Acinetobacter

Defined as urgent” AMR threat by the US CDC, resistant Acinetobacter baumanii cause deadly infections and are difficult to remove from the environment. Acinetobacter is resistant to many antibiotics and is a frequent cause of hospital acquired infections. In the 2022 Lancet publication on drug-resistant infections (GRAM report), it was identified as the leading pathogen causing mortality in Southeast Asia. This episode will cover how infections caused by resistant Acinetobacter impact patients and on how new treatments are making an impact.

Episode Ten: Fungus Among Us: Candida auris

Today, around the world, multidrug resistant and pan-resistant Candida auris has caused outbreaks in healthcare systems. While it is now highlighted by CDC as urgent threat, only six years ago there were no reports of resistant C. auris strains that were able to spread easily between patients. These infections are challenging to treat a with 5% — 10% of colonized patients going on to develop invasive infections. This episode will cover how these outbreaks have impacted patients, healthcare systems, and continued efforts to better understand and slow the impact of these infections.

Episode Eleven: Fighting for the Future: Neonatal Sepsis

Despite great improvements in mortality for children under 5, sepsis remains a leading cause of death in young children. The highest incidence and mortality were seen in newborns, with the biggest impact seen in low- and middle-income countries in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. This episode will highlight how the availability of guidelines, diagnostics, and therapeutics can make a difference in the smallest of patients.

Episode Twelve: Vaccines and the Vulnerable: Resistant Salmonella typhi

Infection prevention is key to slowing antimicrobial resistance. If one does not get sick, then antibiotics are not needed. Over the past decade, several strains of Salmonella typhi have become resistant to multiple antibiotics. This includes extensively drug-resistant (XDR) Salmonella typhi that is resistant to all, but two antibiotic classes recommended for treatment. These resistant strains have spread across the globe. The 2018 launch of typhoid conjugate vaccine (TCV) has slowed infections. It is estimated that TCV introduction with a catch-up campaign will avert 42.5 million cases and 506,000 deaths caused by fluoroquinolone resistant typhoid fever, and 21.2 million cases and 342,000 deaths from multidrug-resistant typhoid fever over 10 years following introduction. This episode will cover the impact of vaccinations and the challenges to deploy effective programs.