Peer through the microscope lens to help the Oxford Martin Programme on Antimicrobial Resistance Testing team spot antibiotic resistance!
Infection Inspection, a citizen science project powered by the Zooniverse, asks volunteers to look at images of bacteria that the Antimicrobial Resistance Testing programme has captured on microscopes to determine if the samples are resistant or sensitive to an antibiotic. The team has collected thousands of images of resistant and sensitive bacteria that have been treated with antibiotics. Bacteria that are sensitive to an antibiotic treatment develop changes to their shape, DNA, and cell wall as the antibiotic interferes with their functions of life.
Your contribution to Infection Inspection will help them develop a test for antibiotic resistance that uses machine learning to provide rapid and accurate results. They have built a machine learning tool that can recognise these changes in sensitive bacteria, but human data will help improve their computer models and provide a reference to how well the computer model can predict resistance compared to human eyes. All you need to do is need you to look at pictures of bacteria and tell us if the changes indicate antibiotic resistance or sensitivity.
The number of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics is increasing, which creates a big problem. By developing much faster tests for antibiotic resistance, the programme hopes that clinicians will be able to select the best antibiotic to use much faster. By targeting antibiotic use in this way patients will recover and feel better faster, and we can slow the rise of antimicrobial resistance by using the antibiotics we have more wisely.