Project Details

Early Career

Status: Funded - Open

Evaluating the role of vertical transmission of antimicrobial resistance in neonatal sepsis

Ashley Styczynski, MD, MPH


BACKGROUND: Infection with antibiotic-resistant bacteria is an increasing cause of newborn deaths, particularly in developing countries such as Bangladesh. The true burden of antibiotic-resistant infections among newborns in Bangladesh is unknown, but limited data show 75-100% of the causative bacteria are resistant to first-line antibiotics.

GAP: It is not known to what extent newborn infections with antibiotic-resistant bacteria may be caused by exposure to community-acquired bacteria that are transmitted from mother to baby and/or through healthcare contact.

HYPOTHESIS: My hypothesis is that pregnant women in Bangladesh are colonized with antibiotic-resistant bacteria, independent of healthcare contact, and that this contributes to newborn infections from resistant bacteria.

METHODS: We will enroll pregnant women in outpatient maternity clinics in Faridpur, Bangladesh, and assess for colonization with antibiotic-resistant bacteria. We will correlate the likelihood of colonization with prior exposures and compare bacteriologic findings to types of bacteria causing newborn infections.

RESULTS: Pending.

IMPACT: This study will critically enhance our understanding of causes of newborn infections and can be used to design strategies that would prevent infections with antibiotic-resistant bacteria.