This year our Annual Lecture and AGM was held at the Royal College of Pathologists in the afternoon of Thursday 24 October 2019. The event was the occasion of the charity’s fifth anniversary and this year’s meeting was our best attended ever. We endeavoured to reach out to to all stakeholders, lay people and professionals alike who wanted to learn of the latest developments in the fight against bacterial antibiotic resistance. We also wanted to showcase some of the research we are supporting. We were delighted that some of our Small Research Grant Holders agreed to give either a poster or oral presentation of their work.
The meeting was opened by the Chief Executive, Professor Colin Garner welcoming all attendees and then then handed over to Professor Chris Dowson, chair of the charity’s Science Committee to introduce this year’s annual lecturer. This year our Annual Lecture was given by the internationally renowned researcher Professor Tim Walsh, School of Medicine, University of Cardiff. Tim’s talk highlighted how antibiotic resistance is a world wide problem that required a One Health approach if it was to be tackled effectively. He also said that the dramatic increase in resistance across the globe was a relatively recent phenomenon and that 20 – 25 years ago, the bacterial antibiotic resistance rate was close to zero. Presenting data on the international transmission of resistant bacteria, Tim mentioned that flies and birds are vectors or carriers. Studies on transmission showed how easy it was for resistant bacteria to be transported around the globe with air travel being one of the prime means of distribution. He then went on to talk about his work in China on colistin resistance where this last resort antibiotic was being used by pig farmers across the country. As a result colistin resistance had built up across the ecosystem. Together with his Chinese collaborators, Tim approached the Chinese government to argue that colistin should be banned from animal use. A national ban was introduced and within 12 months a drop in colistin resistance was seen. Tim’s presentation can be viewed HERE
Following Tim’s talk, Camilla Strang presented on her work on recording of antibiotic usage in the dairy industry. This was followed by a SHORT FILM celebrating the five years that the charity has been in existence before the floor was given over to Arlene Brailey, our Patient Support Officer who described her role and some of the stories of patients with resistant infections. Arlene’s presentation can be found HERE
Further oral presentations were given by Simon Hardman (Sheffield) and Eva Galiza (St Georges, London) on work they were undertaking partially funded by ANTRUK Small Research Grants. Poster presentations on work partially funded or to be funded by the charity were given by Chris Beaudoin (Cambridge), Julia Hubbard (Newcastle), Enas Newire (Lincoln) and Oliver van Hecke (Oxford). In addition Drs Mark Sutton and David Wareham presented the posters they had presented at ECMIDD, Amsterdam in April 2019.
At this point Professor Colin Garner highlighted
the role that Ashley Burgess OBE, the retiring chairman had played in taking the charity forward to its current stage and thanked him most sincerely for his contribution. Ashley was presented with a whisky decanter and two crystal glasses paid for personally by the Trustees and the consultants who work so hard to push the charity forward.
Professor Colin Garner then concluded the meeting with a short presentation about the charity and where it is headed in the coming years. His presentation can be found HERE
Overall attendees thought the event was extremely worthwhile.
Once this part of the day was concluded, the charity held its Annual General Meeting when Tony Farmer, Yva Thakurdas and Erin Lyon were confirmed as Trustees. Professor Christine Bond, whose term of office had expired was re-elected for a further term. Trustees Professors Colin Garner and Chris Dowson retired as Trustees having completed their three terms of office. Both continue to be ex-officio members of the Trustee Board.ANTRUK Annual Lecture final slides 241019