Antimicrobial resistance is an intrinsic and inevitable aspect of microbial survival that continually challenges human health. Research on antimicrobial resistance is central to the mission of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). In fiscal year 2007, NIAID invested more than USD800 million to support basic and translational research on antimicrobials, more than USD200 million of which is devoted to understanding the causes, consequences, and treatments of antimicrobial drug resistance. The complex process that facilitates the transformation of ideas into therapies requires a pipeline that runs from bench to bedside, and NIAID has leveraged the entire spectrum of conventional and biodefense resources. NIAID works in partnership with other federal agencies, industry, foundation partners, and foreign governments. The basic and clinical research supported by NIAID will, ideally, continue to yield profound rewards in terms of the understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of infectious diseases.