Multi-drug resistant organisms (MDROs) are a global healthcare issue. According to the CDC, every year, approximately two million people in the U.S. become ill from antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and 23,000 of them die. These hospital-acquired infections cost $35 billion to manage each year in the United States, and have been reported in nearly every state. If anti-microbial drug resistance is not resolved, some public health experts predict that the death toll could top 300 million over the next 35 years.
Unfortunately, the pipeline for new antibiotic drugs that can combat MDROs is quite limited. With this lack of new therapeutics and the growing need to protect the efficacy of existing antibiotics, an important weapon in combating MDROs is early detection (screening), before bacterial colonization results in higher transmission and infection rates. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other public health organizations have called for new molecular technologies that can detect MDROs more quickly and accurately, improving infection control programs and providing hospitals with faster, more targeted antibiotic response and stewardship programs.