The resistance of bacteria to antibiotics (AntiMicrobial Resistance; AMR) is a rapidly increasing problem with devastating consequences on quality of life worldwide. AMR is associated with unfavourable clinical outcomes that can result in many deaths and skyrocketing healthcare costs.
The “Dutch Antimicrobial Resistance Technology development and Biofilm Assessment Consortium” (DARTBAC), led by dr. Chris Arts of the Maastricht University Medical Centre, will prepare the Netherlands for the time when antibiotics are much less effective in the prevention and eradication of infection due to AMR. DARTBAC was one of the largest, winning proposals within the NWA-ORC-call in 2020 and will develop new antimicrobial technologies from a material perspective. These technologies will not be based on antibiotics to target infection, but will instead focus on prevention and eradication on implant surfaces in hard and soft tissues.
Within NWA-ORC, you need a knowledge-chain wide consortium that can create research with true impact. DARTBAC brought together an interdisciplinary, 23 partner consortium consisting of a range of academic partners with expertise in bacterial infection, materials, biological, medical and social sciences. Additionally, the consortium contains small and large (international) medical device companies and start-up companies with antimicrobial technologies as well as scientific societies and institutes of medical specialists with direct access to our target audience and patient groups. Finally, the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) and an international knowledge platform on AMR with expertise on AMR communication participate in DARTBAC as well.
In the run-up to this NWA-ORC grant, project leader Chris Arts and the consortium worked closely together (November 2019- October 2020) with Evers + Manders consultants Jos van Maasacker and Marlieke van Kesteren from the very beginning. They had multiple brainstorm sessions about the research plan and Jos chaired the consortium meeting in Eindhoven in which we crystallised the research focus. They also drafted, together with the societal partners in the consortium, a strong theory of change impact plan that not only explicated the urgency of the problem, but also provided concrete ways to do something about it.
Composing this consortium, interacting with the involved parties, and making sure everyone had their unique role was a very challenging but rewarding part of the application process. This smooth teamwork between the project leader, consortium partners, and our consultants led the DARTBAC project to become one of the winning proposals (€ 9.8 M). Our agency is proud we were given the opportunity to contribute to this project proposal; perhaps the beginning of solving AMR!
New opportunities coming soon.
The NWA-ORC shortlist for 2021 will soon be known. Was your pre-proposal successful? We are at your service to make your full proposal into a successful one as well!
Follow us on LinkedIn!