Anti-drug resistant microbe Klebsiella was one of a few microbes listed as posing a critical threat to human health by the WHO. Research at Queen's University Belfast has unveiled the molecular mechanisms preventing the treatment of a multi-drug resistant microbe that can cause bladder infections, pneumonia and has mortality rates of 25-60 percent.

The research also found that not only is the strain becoming more resistant to antibiotics, but it is also capable of increasing additional serious infections. Professor Bengoechea, who led the research explained: "Not only can we not treat or fight this infection efficiently but it can cause severe infections by counteracting our body defences, making it even more harmful than we had previously thought."

Professor Bengoechea stressed the research findings should serve as a warning call.

He said: "It's crucial that hospital staff are informed of the potentially lethal effect of this infection and closely monitor patients, mindful that those affected by klebsiella pneumoniae may endure further serious infections that may require different management. This will go some way in mitigating the problem but we are now working to find treatments against this type of infection, exploring the potential of boosting our own defences so that we can find a long-term solution to avoid a potential pandemic in the future."

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