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Launch of Science Museum ‘Superbugs’ exhibition sponsored by UEA

A new Science Museum exhibition that puts the spotlight on antibiotic resistance is being sponsored by UEA.

‘Superbugs: The Fight for Our Lives’ highlights the urgent need to tackle antimicrobial resistance (AMR) which, without action, will lead to advanced medical treatments such as chemotherapy and major surgery all but disappearing.

Part of the Superbugs exhibition

The official launch took place on the 8th November 2017 and was attended by Prof Fiona Lettice, Prof Dylan Edwards, Prof Laura Bowater and Dr Karen Smith. The exhibition features leafcutter ants that Prof Matt Hutchings group from UEA are studying. The ants farm their own natural antibiotics, used to protect themselves and their nest, from bacteria that grow on their bodies. Antibiotics produced by this bacteria can kill superbugs such as MRSA, without MRSA developing resistance to them and there is the hope they can be developed for future drug use.

Over 200 guest attended and these included the other sponsors; Pfizer, Shionogi and RUCK as well as the ABPI, BBC News, BBSRC, Daily Telegraph, CBS, GSK, J&J, MRC, Nature, NHS England, various NHS Trusts, NESTA, PwC, Reuters, Royal College of General Practitioners, Royal College of Paediatrics & Child Health, Sky News, Tesco and various universities and science societies.

They heard from Ian Blatchford, Chief Executive of the Science Museum; Erik Nordkamp, Managing Director of Pfizer UK; Lord Jim O’Neill former government minister and leading economist and Angela Rippon, television journalist, newsreader, writer and presenter, whose live was saved by antibiotics.

After a year of hard work, the Superbugs exhibition is ready for its first museum visitors to explore the hidden world of bacteria and the threat antibiotic resistance poses to our health.

Should you have any questions regarding antibiotic resistance research at UEA please contact:

Prof Laura Bowater, Norwich Medical School (01603 591941)
Dr Karen Smith, Research and Innovation Services (01603 593147)