Published August 13, 2010
A new "superbug" that originated in South Asia, has claimed the life of a Belgian man. It’s the first reported death from the drug-resistant bacteria, Agence France-Presses reported.
The man became infected while he was being treated at a hospital in Pakistan.
"He was involved in a car accident during a trip to Pakistan,” Denis Pierard, a microbiologist from AZ VUB hospital in Brussels, where the man had been treated since June, told Belgian media. "He was hospitalized with a major leg injury."
Pierard said the man then returned to Belgium, but he was already infected. Doctors administered a powerful antibiotic, but it was no help, and the patient died.
Researchers said on Wednesday they had found a new gene called New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase, or NDM-1, in patients in South Asia and in Britain.
NDM-1 makes bacteria highly resistant to almost all antibiotics, including the most powerful class called carbapenems, and experts say there are no new drugs on the horizon to tackle it.
Reuters contributed to this report.