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Scientific Top Training in Antimicrobial Research

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - AIMMS STAR-PLUS (Scientific Top Training in Antimicrobial Research)

Reporting period: 2018-09-01 to 2020-08-31

The problem and its importance for society
The introduction of antimicrobial drugs in the mid-to-late 20th century has saved the lives and eased the suffering of many millions of people globally. In recent years microbial resistance to these antimicrobial drugs has emerged and now means that once treatable infections are fast becoming refractory to multiple types of antimicrobial drugs. The development of antimicrobial resistance is no longer the theoretical threat it once was – in the EU alone, multidrug-resistant bacteria appear to be responsible for more than 25,000 deaths per year with associated healthcare costs running into many billions of Euros. This issue is now so serious that the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) now consider antimicrobial resistance to be a major health threat in Europe in the 21st century.

The overall objectives
• To use an innovative selection procedure for international Top Master's Students to train a new generation of top scientists who can contribute to solving the problem of bacterial, viral and parasitic diseases.
• To train a new breed of excellent young scientists, familiar with the whole scope of drug discovery and development, ADME and safety, systems biology, microbiology and molecular biology who have the skills to become the researchers of the future
• To extend the AIMMS STAR programme internationally with four additional PhD positions resulting in an established international AIMMS STAR PLUS programme, with a dedicated, open selection procedure for top-talented MSc- / PhD-students from across Europe.
We have selected 4 talented early-stage researchers in innovative selection rounds in which they wrote their own project Scientific progress of the work of the ESRs can be found here: https://www.aimms.vu.nl/en/education/special-graduate-programmes/antibiotic-awareness-day-2020