Antibiotic-Resistant Microbes May Be Leading Cause Of Death By 2050, WHO Says

Newsweek reports that the World Health Organization estimates the “worldwide death rates from drug-resistant microbes will climb from the current 700,000 per year to 10 million by 2050,” surpassing “cancer, heart disease and diabetes to become the main cause of death” for humans. Health care providers are “scrambling to tighten up on the use of antibiotics in an effort to slow the development of resistant strains,” but the strategy “will only buy us some time,” the article says. A major problem is that there is “little in the pharmaceutical pipeline to replace” current antibiotics, because drug companies are not keen to spend about $2 billion over 10 years “with little hope of ending up with the sort of blockbuster drug that justifies such an investment,” according to Newsweek.