USP Quality Institute and Boston University to Research Antimicrobial Resistance

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The USP Quality Institute’s third fellow in its Fellowship in Quality Medical Products program will study the role of poor-quality medicines in fostering antimicrobial resistance.

On Feb. 7, 2019, the US Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) announced that the USP Quality Institute had named Carly Ching, PhD, based at Boston University, as the third fellow in its Fellowship in Quality Medical Products program. Ching will study how substandard fluoroquinolone antibiotics, often used to treat bacterial infections, may foster antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

The research will use Escherichia coli (E. coli) in lab-based tests to model “how resistance emerges among these bacteria when exposed to substandard treatment, or medicines that either lack the correct dose of the active ingredient or contain impurities that may harm patients.” A field survey will also be conducted to measure medicine quality in regions where substandard fluoroquinolone usage is prevalent.

“We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Ching as our first fellow at Boston University in the Quality Institute’s expanded fellowship program,” said Erin Wilhelm, director of the USP Quality Institute, in a press release. “Quality medicines are important to public health in general, but they are especially critical to ensuring the success of strategies aimed at addressing AMR. By directly measuring the extent to which substandard medicines contribute to antibiotic resistance acquisition, Dr. Ching’s work will provide a foundation and rationale to inform policies that prioritize quality medicines.”


The research will build on Dr. Ching’s doctoral research into the mechanism of mutagenesis and antibiotic resistance acquisition in Acinetobacter baumannii, a leading cause of multi-drug resistant hospital-acquired infections. The project will be based at the Zaman laboratory for molecular and cellular dynamics at Boston University. Dr. Ching will also participate in field work and interact with scientific experts at USP and other stakeholder organizations.

Source: USP