The COVID-19 pandemic poses a threat to our antibiotic infrastructure, which is already compromised due to a lack of new therapies. That threat makes antimicrobial stewardship even more important.
Patients at the greatest risk for secondary infections, particularly infections that are resistant to first-line antibiotics, include people who are already vulnerable due to other conditions and diseases—like COVID-19. Because of that, antimicrobial resistance poses a significant additional threat, especially as healthcare systems become overburdened.
Researchers from MIT and Harvard developed a new approach to antibiotic discovery using a type of artificial AI called deep learning. So far, their model has identified eight antibacterial compounds that differ in structure from known antibiotics.