While superhumans are limited to the realm of fiction (at least for now) superbugs pose a real and present danger across the world. These are bacteria that have mutated over time to develop a resistance to one or several antibiotics, making them life-threatening and constantly presenting new challenges to healthcare professionals.

What’s more, the threat of these bacteria is growing and recent study has shown how they can travel all around the world, infecting even those who have never stepped out of their cities.

Over three years, 39 volunteers travelled across 59 countries. They collected 400 swabs at toilet doors of 136 airports to check for the presence of drug-resistant bacteria. This study established that one need not have visited a disease-hit regions to carry a pathogen – all they had to do was touch a doorknob, for instance, at a transport hub like an airport.

In this episode of The Intersection, microbiologists talk about the long fight against these super-bugs and why India is particularly vulnerable to the threat posed by drug-resistant bacteria.

This is the latest episode of The Intersection, a fortnightly podcast on Audiomatic. For more such podcasts, visit audiomatic.in.