Dr Ben Evans
Lecturer, Norwich Medical School
My work centres on understanding which mechanisms bacteria are using to become resistant to antibiotics, and how these are evolving and being transferred in bacterial populations. An example of current work is investigating the effect of non-antibiotic drugs, such as cancer chemotherapies, on promoting antibiotic resistance. Many drugs used in healthcare coincidently have antibacterial properties, and therefore bacteria develop resistance against these. However, in doing so, some bacteria can become more resistant to antibiotics at the same time, even without having been exposed to any antibiotics. This ‘cross-resistance’, where exposure to one drug (e.g. a cancer chemotherapy) causes resistance to a different drug (e.g. an antibiotic) is not well understood despite its potential to have a major impact on the evolution and spread of antibiotic resistance. By understanding how different drugs cause cross-resistance to antibiotics we will gain a more holistic view of antibiotic resistance that can be exploited in the design and development of new drugs, and in the management and use of existing drugs.