These are the new antibiotic-resistant bacteria that the WHO warns about

These are the new antibiotic-resistant bacteria that the WHO warns about
These are the new antibiotic-resistant bacteria that the WHO warns about

The World Health Organization (WHO), a specialized agency of the United Nations founded in 1948 with the goal of promoting health throughout the world, has published a list that includes up to 15 different pathogen families. In fact, these pathogens are considered a threat to public health due to their antibiotic resistance.

Categorizing antibiotics according to their degree of danger is crucial to understanding how they act and what happens when they lose their effectiveness against bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. Antibiotic resistance is a serious problem, and Spain, like many other places, faces a significant number of deaths due to antibiotic-resistant infections. antibiotics or superbugs.

In this sense, according to data from the Spanish Society of Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology, it is estimated that more than 20,000 people They die every year in Spain from these infections. Likewise, another problem is that if there is no antibiotic that stops itare transmitted to more people, increasing the percentage of morbidity and mortality.

For this reason, last Friday the WHO published its new list of priority bacterial pathogens for 2024, in which it has eliminated five combinations of pathogens and antibiotics that were included since 2017 and instead has added four new.

  • Enterobacteriales resistant to third generation cephalosporins.
  • Streptococci of group A resistant to macrolides.
  • Streptococci group B resistant to penicillin.
  • The Mycobacterium tuberculosis resistant to rifampicin.


First of all, there are the critical priority, which are characterized by being very dangerous because they cause many diseases throughout the world. In turn, they have a high resistance to treatments and they transmit those same resistances to other bacteria. Specifically, these are gram-negative bacteria resistant to last resort antibiotics and Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Subsequently, the high priority pathogenssuch as Salmonella and Shigella, cause a lot of morbidity and mortality in low- and middle-income countries, in addition to “bringing many problems for health establishments», as reported by the WHO. In this case, it is urgent that specific studies be carried out to stop them.

Finally, among the pathogens of medium priority the group A and B streptococciwhich have made it to the list in 2024. They lead to a high burden of disease, so they require increased surveillanceespecially in more vulnerable population groups such as children and the elderly.

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