G20 Health Ministers highlight urgent need to develop new antimicrobials to tackle resistance

G20 Health Ministers highlight urgent need to develop new antimicrobials to tackle resistance

(BOSTON/GENEVA: August 21, 2023) – The Global Antibiotic Research & Development Partnership (GARDP) and Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator (CARB-X) jointly welcome the G20 Health Ministers’ Outcome Document, which underscores the urgent need to develop new antimicrobials, including antibiotics, to help tackle the growing global health crisis caused by antimicrobial resistance (AMR). The declaration specifically cites global international non-profit initiatives such as CARB-X, GARDP and SECURE, as playing a critical role in accelerating antimicrobial R&D and access.

“AMR continues to be treated as a market failure. But most importantly it is a public health failure,” said Peter Beyer, GARDP’s Deputy Executive Director. “We welcome the G20 outcome document and thank current donors for their support. Push and pull funding are both necessary to replenish the global antibiotic pipeline, and most importantly, to ensure that new antibiotics reach the most vulnerable, particularly women, children and newborns.”

GARDP and CARB-X greatly value the G20 Health Ministers’ leadership in addressing the growing threat of AMR, which is estimated to have caused nearly 1.3 million deaths in 2019, more than HIV/AIDS or malaria in that same year.

“Because the clinical pipeline of antibacterial products is insufficient, it is critical that we unite with governments and partners around the world to accelerate the early development of new life-saving antibiotics, vaccines and rapid diagnostics that are designed to help patients everywhere,” said Kevin Outterson, Executive Director of CARB-X and Austin B. Fletcher Professor of Law at Boston University. “We are grateful to the G20 Health Ministers for recognizing the global threat of drug-resistant infections, and prioritizing resources to save lives and strengthen global economies.”

The G20 document also highlights the need to ensure a sustainable supply of existing treatments and their appropriate use, while underscoring the importance of push and pull mechanisms to accelerate research and development (R&D) efforts and revitalize the antibiotics market.

CARB-X searches globally for early antibacterial products to accelerate toward completion of first-in-human trials, providing scientific and technical support in addition to funding.

GARDP’s work focuses on ensuring that new treatments are not only developed but are also accessible to those who need them. Critical to this work is SECURE, an initiative lead by GARDP and the World Health Organization (WHO), along with other partners, which will fill a critical gap in global access to antibiotics.

SECURE aims to increase sustainable, equitable, and appropriate access to a quality-assured antibiotic portfolio driven by public health and clinical needs by leveraging financial tools, procurement strategies, and stewardship strengthening. Plans are underway to launch SECURE in an initial set of participating countries in 2024.

CARB-X is funded in part with federal funds from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response; Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority; under agreement number: 75A50122C00028. CARB-X is also funded by awards from Wellcome (WT224842), Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the UK Global Antimicrobial Resistance Innovation Fund (GAMRIF) funded by the UK Government Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The content of this statement is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of any CARB-X funders.

About CARB-X 
CARB-X (Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator) is a global non-profit partnership dedicated to supporting early-stage antibacterial research and development to address the rising threat of drug-resistant bacteria. CARB-X supports innovative therapeutics, preventatives and rapid diagnostics. CARB-X is led by Boston University and funded by a consortium of governments and foundations. CARB-X funds only projects that target drug-resistant bacteria highlighted on the CDC’s Antibiotic Resistant Threats list, or the Priority Bacterial Pathogens list published by the WHO, with a priority on those pathogens deemed Serious or Urgent on the CDC list or Critical or High on the WHO list. | Twitter @CARB_X

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services works to enhance and protect the health and well-being of all Americans, providing for effective health and human services and fostering advances in medicine, public health, and social services. The Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response (ASPR) leads the nation’s medical and public health preparedness for, response to and recovery from disaster and other public health emergencies. Within ASPR, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) invests in innovation, advanced research and development, acquisition, and manufacturing of medical countermeasures – vaccines, drugs, therapeutics, diagnostic tools, and non-pharmaceutical products needed to combat health security threats. As part of HHS, NIH is the primary U.S. federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. NIAID conducts and supports research — at NIH, throughout the United States, and worldwide — to study the causes of infectious and immune-mediated diseases, and to develop better means of preventing, diagnosing and treating these illnesses.

About Wellcome
Wellcome supports science to solve the urgent health challenges facing everyone. We support discovery research into life, health and wellbeing, and we’re taking on three worldwide health challenges: mental health, infectious disease and climate and health.

About the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
Education and research are crucial foundations for our future. Thus, the promotion of education, science and research is a policy priority of the German Federal Government. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) strengthens education at all stages of life and provides support for scientific research and innovation.

About the Global AMR Innovation Fund (GAMRIF)
The Global AMR Innovation Fund (GAMRIF) is a One Health UK aid fund that supports research and development around the world to reduce the threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in humans, animals and the environment for the benefit of people in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). GAMRIF core objectives are to develop innovative One Health solutions to tackle AMR; increase availability of context-specific, accessible, and affordable innovations for LMICs; establish international research partnerships with industry, academia, and governments; and collaborate with and leverage additional funding from other global donors.

About Boston University 
Founded in 1839, Boston University is an internationally recognized institution of higher education and research. With nearly 37,000 students, it is the third-largest independent university in the United States. BU consists of 17 schools and colleges and the interdisciplinary Faculty of Computing & Data Sciences, along with a number of multi-disciplinary centers and institutes integral to the University’s research and teaching mission. In 2012, BU joined the Association of American Universities (AAU), a consortium of 65 leading research universities in the United States and Canada. For further information, please contact Kim Miragliuolo at