Antibacterial Resistance Leadership Group (ARLG)

In 2013, NIAID launched the Antibacterial Resistance Leadership Group (ARLG), a major clinical effort to address antibacterial resistance (AR). Since its inception, the program has established collaborations in 19 countries and conducted over 40 clinical research studies involving more than 20,000 volunteers. Studies conducted by the ARLG include clinical testing of new drugs to treat multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria, evaluating diagnostic devices in clinical settings, , and optimizing treatment regimens to reduce the emergence of resistance. In 2019, NIAID renewed the program’s funding, providing up to $102.5 million over 7 years.   

Main Areas of Focus

The renewed ARLG program is focused on three priorities:

  • Infections caused by Gram-negative bacteria, such as Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and other carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE)
  • Infections caused by Gram-positive bacteria, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and vancomycin-resistant Enterococci
  • Diagnostic tests to optimize use of antibiotics

For more information on the focus of the ARLG, please see Chambers et. al, ARLG 2.0 – Back to Business, Clin. Infect. Dis, 2021 Feb 15;ciab141. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciab141.

Mentoring and Guidance

In addition to developing, implementing, and managing an extensive clinical program, the ARLG is committed to mentoring the next generation of clinical scientists in the field of AR. The ARLG offers three opportunities to meet the needs of trainees at different career stages: the ARLG Fellowship, Early Stage Investigator Seed Grants, and the Trialists in Training Program. For more information, please visit Experts from the ARLG are also available to consult with industry and provide advice, guidance, and protocol design for drug, device, or diagnostic development.


The ARLG is led by two principal investigators, Dr. Vance Fowler, Duke University, and Dr. Henry Chambers, University of California, San Francisco. Work is supported by ARLG’s expert committees and the Duke Clinical Research Institute. NIAID/Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (DMID) and an External Advisory Board provide oversight and direction for the ARLG.


The ARLG has three separate component centers:

  • Scientific Leadership Center, directed by Drs. Vance Fowler and Chip Chambers
  • Clinical Operations Center, directed by Dr. Heather Cross,  Duke Clinical Research Institute
  • Statistics and Data Management Center, directed by Dr. Scott Evans, Harvard University
  • Laboratory Center, led by Dr. Robin Patel, Mayo Clinic

Antimicrobial (Drug) Resistance

NIAID conducts and supports research on antimicrobial resistance. Because most bacteria, viruses, and other microbes multiply rapidly, they can quickly evolve and develop resistance to antimicrobial drugs.

Find out more about antimicrobial resistance research at NIAID
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