Fingerprick award

The inappropriate use of antibiotics in non-bacterial infection is a major problem the world over and an interminable problem for medicinal chemists and the pharmaceutical industry hoping to tackle the problem of drug resistance. A breakthrough skin-prick test that can distinguish between a viral and a bacterial infection could guide healthcare workers in their prescribing and reduce such inappropriate use. The test is easy to use and gives an accurate answer within about ten minutes. The test's developers Minicare HNL, a combined research effort of P&M Venge AB from Sweden and Philips Electronics from the Netherlands, received a one million euro (a little over $1m) award from the European Commission for their invention as part of the Horizon Prize for Better Use of Antibiotics.