“Superbug” claims 1st victim | TheMedGuru


Days after the new gene among bacteria that is highly resistant to even the most powerful antibiotics started creating ripples, the new “superbug” claimed its 1st victim.

A Belgian man succumbed to the dangerous drug-resistant NDM-1 (New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase-1) bacteria, purportedly having its origin in south Asia.

Multi-drug resistant
While the place of origin is debatable, a senior microbiologist from Mumbai,
India, on the condition of anonymity, said that mutations in bugs are a definite possibility in countries like India where antibiotics are routinely overused or abused.

The death has fuelled fears that the bacteria could spread worldwide and create havoc.

NDM-1 is said to be resistant to carbapenems, a group of antibiotics often given as a last resort for emergency treatment in case of multi-drug resistant bugs.

The NDM-1 gene was initially identified last year by Cardiff University’s Timothy Walsh in two types of bacteria–Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli.

The fatality
The fatality was infected by the bacteria while the patient was hospitalized in Pakistan, said Dr Denis Pierard, a microbiologist from AZ VUB hospital in Brussels.

“He was involved in a car accident during a trip to Pakistan. He was hospitalised with a major leg injury and then repatriated to Belgium, but he was already infected,” said the doctor.

The Belgian man passed away despite being administered colistin, a powerful antibiotic, revealed the doctor.

Professor Peter Collignon, Canberra Hospital’s head of infectious diseases, said the case was just the “tip of the iceberg”.

“We found this multi-resistant, untreatable bug in their urine, luckily not causing too many problems. But it’s a real problem if it spreads to others. The germ we had was untreatable,” Collignon said of the three patients infected with the bacteria.

Superbug’s spread in India
Meanwhile, the bacterium appears to be spreading its tentacles in India as well.

The Hinduja Hospital in Mahim has isolated the super bacteria in 22 patients within a span of three months.

“If a single hospital can isolate such a significant number of bacteria with a new resistance gene in a short period of time; the data from all the Indian hospitals, if available would potentially be more interesting and shocking than the human genome project data, which is considered as a discovery more important than the moon landing itself,” claimed Dr Abdul Ghafar K., consultant in infectious diseases at Apollo Hospital, Chennai.

YouTube – NDM-1 Drug-Resistant Superbug Surfaces in Medicine Hat, Canada


The rare, very dangerous NDM-1 drug-resistant bacteria appears in a hospital in Medicine Hat, Canada. Analysts could not identify the bacteria until tests could be performed in Calgary, Alberta

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