ZonMw JPIAMR, in collaboration with NWO-WOTRO and the ZonMw programme Goed Gebruik Geneesmiddelen, finances innovative projects on diagnostics and surveillance of antimicrobial resistance (AMR).
The 9th call JPIAMR Call "Diagnostics and Surveillance" has yielded 34 full applications with innovative research projects. 20 international financiers participate in this call. The research projects focus on new or improved diagnostic and surveillance tools, technologies and methods to effectively control antimicrobial resistance in humans, animals and the environment (One Health). Low and middle income countries (LMICs) are strongly represented as project partners.
New in this call was that 3 specific LMIC funders were involved: NWO-WOTRO (Netherlands), SIDA (Sweden) and IDRC (Canada). One of the specific goals of this call was to support and increase the participation of LMIC researchers. Research and innovation in the field of AMR by and within LMICs are of great importance for our collective global future. AMR thrives in environments with limited access to water and sanitation, medicine, veterinary medicine and healthcare. These circumstances therefore represent increased and unknown risks for humans, animals, and the environment. Including LMIC perspectives in the development of AMR diagnostics increases understanding of local limitations as well as cultural, contextual, and behavioral factors that can influence the use of antibiotics. It also provides knowledge about which technologies and methods are the most suitable and cost-effective to implement.
This call is therefore well aligned with the message that was conveyed during the 2nd ministerial conference in June this year. At this conference it was emphasised that AMR causes an increase in poverty and in particular poses a major threat in LMICs.
Of the 34 project applications, 12 are recommended for funding. Dutch researchers are involved in 5 of these projects, often with a coordinating task. Because of this success and the limited Dutch budget, we started looking for additional funding within and outside ZonMw. The majority of the budget has been made available from the ZonMw JPIAMR international subsidy program; with an additional budget from the ZonMw program GGG, the French subsidy provider ANR and the Swedish development aid financier SIDA. NWO-WOTRO participates in this call by funding LMIC activities: they finance global development and capacity building activities, both carried out by Dutch researchers in LMICs and by local LMIC researchers.
The beauty of international collaboration is that international funders can support each other. And in this way can together solve a potential budget deficit. This allows to grant as many project applications of good quality and relevance as possible. Moreover, the knowledge that can be acquired in international projects is often many times greater than in projects that are performed solely nationally. In addition, as a funder you also have access to the results of the project in which no Dutch researchers are involved.
The purpose of this call is to effectively control antimicrobial resistance in humans, animals, and the environment. Looking at the relationsbetween humans, animals and the environment is called the 'One Health' approach. It is the joint effort of multiple sectors and disciplines - both local, national and international - to achieve the optimal health for people, animals, and the environment.