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Novel Strategy to cope with Multidrug Resistant Pathogens

Project description

Searching for new treatments for Acinetobacter baumannii infection

Acinetobacter baumannii (A. baumannii) is an opportunistic bacterial pathogen associated with hospital infections including pneumonia, meningitis and bloodstream and wound infections. The recent increase in incidence coupled with a dramatic increase in cases associated with multidrug-resistant strains has attracted significant attention to this emerging deadly pathogen. The EU-funded AgainstResistance project proposes to find novel antimicrobial targets for A. baumannii using haem-related systems to be discovered by the researchers that help bacteria to utilise iron, contributing to pathogen survival. The research will employ bioinformatics as a tool to explore A. baumannii haem metabolism-related genes. The role of these genes will be evaluated using microbiology and biochemistry, and their contribution to infection will be tested in host–pathogen interaction assays.


The World Health Organization recently added Acinetobacter baumannii at the top of the priority list of emerging and critical pathogens, against which the number of effective antibiotics is alarmingly low. I propose to find novel antimicrobial targets for A. baumannii by discovering haem related systems that contribute to its survival. Bioinformatics will be used as a powerful tool to explore A. baumannii haem metabolism-related genes. The role of these genes will be tested through microbiology and biochemistry approaches, and their contribution to virulence will be analysed in host-pathogen interaction assays. This multidisciplinary research programme will boost my scientific skills and act as a pipeline to launch my career as an independent researcher. Furthermore, this proposal has the added value of including a custom-made training programme on leadership, management, dissemination and outreach activities. Hence, “AgainstResistance” will be the ideal framework to enhance my competences, maturity and independence as a competitive researcher, and crucial to boost my career prospects as a future group leader in the field of antimicrobial resistance, which is one of the critical current and future health challenges. The proposal will make a real difference in European excellence and competitiveness by materialising its leadership and expertise in multidrug resistance of human pathogens.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 147 815,04
1099 085 Lisboa

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Continente Área Metropolitana de Lisboa Área Metropolitana de Lisboa
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 147 815,04