News and Opinions  –  2021

Maria Pränting: I get to work with things I am passionate about!

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In ReAct's series of celebrating ReAct 15 years we decided to talk to our staff across the globe. Maria Pränting is Scientific Coordinator at ReAct Europe hosted by Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden. At ReAct I get to combine several things that I feel passionate about - I get to contribute with my expertise in antibiotic resistance and work with science communication.

What made you join ReAct? For how long have you worked here?

Maria Pränting, Scientific Officer, ReAct Europe. Photo: Thomas Goecke.

– I had the opportunity to join ReAct on a part time basis to help develop the ReAct Toolbox – our online resource with tools and information to support work on antibiotic resistance.

– This was back in 2014 when I was working as a Postdoctoral fellow in Infection Biology, and had finalized a PhD project on resistance development in bacteria (to antimicrobial peptides). So, it has been close to eight years now working with ReAct.

– Now I am leading the work on the ReAct Toolbox. It has evolved a lot over the years, and it is great that we now see many more tools and initiatives coming from lower resource settings.

Visit the ReAct Toolbox

What engages you the most in your position at ReAct?

– At ReAct I get to combine several things that I feel passionate about – I get to contribute with my expertise in antibiotic resistance and work with science communication to translate the research and make it available to wider audiences. And in this way – help advancing this hugely important but under-recognized issue.

– I also have very skilled and knowledgeable colleagues throughout the world. This is a core strength of ReAct and really makes the work rewarding.

– Although only being a small part of my work, teaching and engaging with students brings a lot of energy, ideas and meaning to the work.

What will you be focusing your work on in the nearest future?

–  I am really excited about ReAct’s recently initiated collaboration with the International Centre for Antimicrobial Resistance Solutions (ICARS), and working closely with my colleagues in ReAct Africa. The aim is to support country actors to access and develop contextualized tools and sustainable processes for implementation of National Action Plans on Antimicrobial Resistance. The learnings and tools will be spread to wider audiences through for example the ReAct Toolbox.

– I am also involved in a Sweden wide project called Antibiotic smart Sweden (Antibiotikasmart Sverige). It aims to raise the profile of the antibiotic resistance issue and engage all of society – the vision is that regions, municipalities, hospitals, long-term care homes, schools, sewage treatment plants and other operations in Sweden are engaged and taking action, and that innovative ways of working are spread and scaled up.

This year ReAct is celebrating 15 years of action on antibiotic resistance and this article is part of this celebration!
The story of ReAct started 15 years ago with a small group of people, many who are still with the network today. They all shared a passion for global health, and felt the urgency to address the growing problem of antibiotic resistance. The network has since grown, with the presence of offices in 5 continents and many passionate members working together.
Read more about ReAct 15 years celebrations and learn more about the story of ReAct!

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