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Deadly Bacteria NDM-4 found in India
Sep 13, 2014

A recently published study reveals a deadly bacteria variant known as NDM-4 found by researchers at Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College of Aligarh Muslim University. NDM-4, also called the super bug, was isolated from random sampling of three sites in the hospital’s sewage located within 10 metres from the washrooms of the general ward at the hospital. It is the first recorded presence of the deadly, resistant strain in India. Out that of 52 samples they collected and analysed, only one confirmed case of NDM-4 was isolated. However, the organism multiplies at a very rapid pace, indicating that even a one confirmed case cannot be taken lightly. 

This strain of bacteria has so far been detected in Cameroon, Denmark, France and the Czech Republic.

Although these findings are likely to be a cause of serious concern to some extent, but there is no need to panic. Poor hygiene standards in the country the detection of this bacteria in the E-coli here certainly highlights the need for increased awareness about the urgent need of taking precautions with regards to safe drinking water and uncontaminated food.

People with very low immunity and those with cancer and HIV patients are at a greater risk of infection but those with good health are relatively safe provided they follow rules of basic personal hygiene.

The researchers also mention that NDM-4 detected at Aligarh is a more deadly variant of the New Delhi metallo lactamase NDM-1 that was previously isolated in 2009 from a Swedish patient of Indian origin. NDM-4 is the latest variants of the original super bug that could have emerged due to overuse of antibiotics.

What is Antibiotic Resistance?: Microorganisms constantly evolve to efficiently adapt to new environments and antibiotic resistance is one such adaptation. The ability of microorganisms to grow in the presence of an antibiotic that would normally kill them or limit their growth is called antimicrobial resistance. The bacteria which have become resistant cause infections which cannot be treated with the usual drugs, dosages or concentrations. Bacteria which have developed resistance to multiple antibiotics are called multidrug resistant (MDR) bacteria or more commonly,superbugs.

The availability of antibiotics changed the course of history. Many infections previously not treatable found cure. But with increasing menace of resistant bacteria we are now facing severe infections with little or no antibiotics to cure them.  Existing drugs have become less effective against antibiotic resistant bacteria. Diseases that were easily treatable with mild forms of antibiotics now need to be treated with stronger combination forms of antibiotics. If you are infected with antibiotic resistant bacteria you are more likely to have longer hospital stays and more complicated treatment thereby increasing your medical costs and financial burden. You may be left with potentially untreatable infections increasing the risk of death.


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