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222 students from high school diploma participate in the I Small World Initiative Navarra and isolate 75 samples with antimicrobial activity

In the first edition of this competition 50 students from Degrees of Biology, Biochemistry and Pharmacy of the University of Navarra have collaborated.

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14/06/18 13:08 Laura Juampérez

Small World Iniative -an initiative that emerged at Yale University in 2012 to promote the finding of new antibiotics and foster scientific culture- has held its first closing gala. In total, more than 200 students from 9 schools in Navarra took part in this edition: IESO Elortzibar, IES Navarro Villoslada, Sagrado Corazón, Maristas, Luis Amigó, Hijas de Jesús, Nuestra Señora del Huerto, Ikastola san Fermín and high school Askatasuna. Likewise, 50 students from Degrees of Biology, Biochemistry and Pharmacy, and 8 professors and doctoral students from department of Microbiology and Parasitology of the University of Navarra have collaborated.

All of them have worked with the students, throughout the course, to take up to 1,760 bacterial isolates from different soils. Of all the samples, 75 have shown antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive bacteria and one of them also shows bactericidal activity.

goal In addition to finding of new bacteria that can become new antibiotics, the main purpose of this project is to awaken scientific vocations among young people and raise awareness of the serious problem of the inappropriate use of antibiotics and the growing emergence of super-resistant bacteria.

As a result of this first edition, two students from School of Sciences have developed their Final Projects Degree on the initiative and next year they will carry out the isolation of bacterial strains that have demonstrated antimicrobial activity. "In general, the participants have indicated that they would recommend this activity to other colleagues and centers and wish to know how research continues. In addition, they have highlighted that they are now more aware of the problem of antibiotic resistance. Also, teachers have pointed out that students have acquired, through their participation in SWI, new practical skills", highlights its manager, Professor of Microbiology at the University of Navarra David Gonzalez.