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ICMR director Soumya Swaminathan joins leading UN group

57-year old Soumya Swaminathan has joined a leading United Nations (UN) group, where she will lend her expertise towards the global fight against antimicrobial resistance. Soumya Swaminathan is currently the director of Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). The high-level UN group that she will be joining has been established by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. The name of the group is Interagency Coordination Group on Antimicrobial Resistance. The group will be led by two prominent people, Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed and World Health Organisation Director-General Margaret Chan.

It may be recalled that Swaminathan also holds the post of Secretary, Department of Health Research in India’s Ministry of Health & Family Welfare. She has won various awards in the field of pediatrics and clinical research. She has also done groundbreaking research on tuberculosis. It was in 1992 that she joined the Tuberculosis Research Center in Chennai, where she dedicated 23 years of her life, conducting a wide variety of research.

The UN group she will join will seek to provide guidance to global teams who may be involved in addressing antimicrobial resistance. Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) occurs when parasites such as bacteria, fungi and viruses become resistant to antimicrobial drugs such as antibiotics, antifungals, antivirals, antimalarials, and anthelmintics.

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