Alarmed over the increasing use of antibiotics to treat even
common diseases, Nobel laureate Dr. John Robin Warren has warned that resistance
to antibiotics poses a 'major global threat' to public health.
"I think one of the current issues globally is the increasing use of
antibiotics and the increasing resistance to antibiotics. If that keeps
growing, we are going to be in real trouble," said Warren, who was in
Mumbai for the 102nd Indian Science Congress.
Warren also said, "Doctors should stop prescribing antibiotics when they are
"A doctor shouldn't prescribe an antibiotic to a patient, if he/she
knows that the antibiotics are not going to be of any assistance. However, some
doctors tend to prescribe antibiotics because of pressure from their
patients," he said.
Asked if he noticed a decline in prescription of antibiotics after a report
by the World Health Organization (WHO), the Australia scientist said, "The
situation is not a disaster yet, but could easily become one. I haven't seen
things improving after the report."
Dr John Robin Warren awarded the Nobel for his work in Physiology in 2005
for his discovery on the 'bacterium Helicobacter pylori' and its role in
gastritis and peptic ulcer diseases.
"When we began our journey, scientific and technological tools were not
advanced. It was believed that bacteria couldn't grow in stomach, good biopsies
were rare, and there were no clinical specimens.
Gastritis was not understood well, but we refused to be discouraged, kept
experimenting with determination. After years of dedicated hard work, we
discovered the bacterial strain," he said.
"It was a quite a miracle and opened new vistas in discovering treatments
for Gastritis and peptic ulcers for making the life of human beings more
productive and healthy," Warren added.