News

Antibiotic Resistance

  • 10.07.2021  |  Drug-resistant Infections Led to $1.9 Billion in Health Care Costs, More Than 10,000 Deaths Among Older Adults in One Year

    Infectious Diseases Society of America | A new study published today in Clinical Infectious Diseases highlights the cost and death toll amongst older adults in the US in 2017. The study calls for urgent federal action to stem the growing burden of infections caused by antibiotic resistance.

    Full Story

  • 10.06.2021  |  A Grim Diagnosis – Half The World’s Population Has Limited Access To Diagnostics

    FORBES | The Lancet Commission on diagnostics urges the increase in access to diagnostics, especially at the primary care level, in order to achieve universal health coverage globally. “Good clinical care begins with the first step of diagnosis,” writes Madhukar Pai, author of the Forbes article highlighting the Commission’s recommendations. “To ensure success in the provision of universal health coverage (UHC), the conquest of antimicrobial resistance, and the prevention of pandemics, policy makers and funders must recognize the centrality of diagnostics,” says Kenneth Fleming, Chair of the Commission in this Forbes article. Read the full Lancet Commission on diagnostics in our publications section here.

    Full Story

  • 09.15.2021  |  Rational design of a new antibiotic class for drug-resistant infections

    NATURE | A new paper on the treatment of infections caused by Gram-negative pathogens offers a strategy for the rational design of diazabicyclooctane inhibitors of penicillin-binding proteins. This study, co-authored by colleagues at Entasis Therapeutics, discusses what led to the discovery of ETX0462, a promising candidate offering “potent in vitro and in vivo activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa plus all other Gram-negative ESKAPE pathogens, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia and biothreat pathogens”. It is also a CARB-X-funded program.

     

    Full Story

  • 08.20.2021  |  Global AMR R&D Hub releases new report estimating the global market potential for therapeutic & diagnostic products

    GLOBAL AMR R&D HUB | Following a three-year in-depth study, the Global AMR R&D Hub has released a new report with important insights on the “astonishing mismatch between global needs and commercial potential”. The report strongly reinforces that innovation for accessible products is critical and in need of support.

    Full Story

  • 06.23.2021  |  AMR Preparedness Index offers best practices and framework to take action

    GLOBAL COALITION ON AGING | The new, first-of-its-kind AMR Preparedness Index issued by the Global Coalition on Aging and the Infectious Diseases Society of America offers an examination of 11 of the biggest economies across the globe and how they can effectively address and manage the growing AMR threat. The Index identifies best practices, provides a framework for accountability and evaluation, offers ways to drive policy change and promotes collaborative action.

    Full Story

  • 06.16.2021  |  PASTEUR Act is reintroduced

    STAT | The PASTEUR Act is being reintroduced to the House and the Senate. The legislation urges the US government to restructure the federal payment protocol into a subscription program that will pay for antimicrobials according to their value, not the quantity of pills sold. Furthermore, it will boost data collection at hospitals which could receive federal funding to participate in an anti-overuse program. Boston University Professor and CARB-X Executive Director Kevin Outterson said that the proposed legislation is a game-changer for the AMR innovation gap and the final missing piece in the US National Action Plan on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria.

    Full Story

  • 06.10.2021  |  How small companies are navigating the challenging antibiotic market

    ACCESS TO MEDICINE FOUNDATION | The environment for biotechs and small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to develop new, innovative antimicrobials is “an uphill battle”. These companies are critically important to antibacterial research and development (R&D) but face challenges securing resources. Since it was founded, CARB-X has funded companies with a median size of 25 or fewer employees. Subscription models are needed to restore economic health to antibacterial R&D.

    Full Story

  • 05.28.2021  |  Antibiotic resistance is the ‘silent pandemic’ the world needs to deal with: Dame Sally Davies

    INEWS | In the run-up to the G7 health ministers’ meetings, taking place in Oxford on June 3-4, 2021, UK AMR Envoy Dame Sally Davies is calling for more international cooperation to tackle what the World Health Organization has called one of the top 10 global public health threats facing humanity. Antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change over time and no longer respond to medicines, are making infections harder to treat and increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death. Each year, 700,000 people die from antibiotic resistant infections. “Before Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin in 1928, an infection from a simple cut could mean the end of life. Nearly 100 years later, the antibiotic safety blanket we live our lives with is being pulled from us. … Every corner of our health system depends on antibiotics,” she writes.

    Full Story

  • 05.18.2021  |  The effect of generic market entry on antibiotic prescriptions in the United States

    NATURE | A new study suggests that the entry of low-cost generic antibiotics onto the market in the US does not drive higher consumption of these antibiotics. Drug resistance is a global public health challenge that contributes to mortality from infectious diseases and increases healthcare costs. Antibiotic use is a primary driver of resistance and is at a high level in the United States. As much as 30 per cent of oral antibiotic use in the US may be unnecessary. This study, written by leading drug-resistance experts in Europe and the US, including Boston University law professor and CARB-X Executive Director Kevin Outterson, suggests that more research is needed to explore the effect of generic entry on antibiotic prices and to consider differences among antibiotic classes. Research is also needed to determine the effects, including access and antibiotic resistance, when generics enter the market in low- and middle-income countries

    Full Story

  • 04.16.2021  |  WHO: 2020 antibacterial agents in clinical and preclinical development: an overview and analysis

    WHO| The World Health Organization’s (WHO) 2020 annual review of the clinical and preclinical antibacterial pipelines evaluates the potential of antibacterial candidates in different stages of development.

    Full Story

  • 04.12.2021  |  DECENNIAL DAY 2021, Padmini Srikantiah – A Shot in the Arm: Innovation in Vaccines and Potential to Impact Healthcare and Address Antimicrobial Resistance

    Padmini Srikantiah, Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy Lead at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, examined the economic and societal benefits of vaccines in preventing antibiotic-resistant infections and disease and the lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic to accelerate the delivery of life-saving vaccines to the world. The presentation was made at Decennial Day, April 12, 2021. The Decennial Conference reviews the advances of the previous decade and the opportunities and trends for the fields of healthcare epidemiology, infectious diseases, and infection prevention and control for the future. Co-hosted by the Society for Health care Epidemiology of America (SHEA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Decennial Program focused on global solutions for preventing healthcare-associated infections and addressing emerging pathogens and antibiotic resistance in healthcare.  

    Full Story

  • 04.12.2021  |  DECENNIAL DAY 2021, Tim Jinks – Combating Emerging and Enduring Pathogens including AMR: Taking Action Today to make an Impact Tomorrow

    Timothy Jinks, Head of Wellcome Trust’s AMR Programme, provided an overview of Wellcome Trusts’ Global Response to AMR report, and said that while some progress has been made, AMR is not being prioritized as it should by world leaders and policy makers and that the AMR agenda is at risk of losing momentum. It is critical to capture new momentum in with a clear post-COVID-19 AMR narrative. He mapped out strategies to achieve that. The presentation was made at Decennial Day, April 12, 2021. The Decennial Conference reviews the advances of the previous decade and the opportunities and trends for the fields of healthcare epidemiology, infectious diseases, and infection prevention and control for the future. Co-hosted by the Society for Health care Epidemiology of America (SHEA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the 2021 Decennial Program focused on global solutions for preventing healthcare-associated infections and addressing emerging pathogens and antibiotic resistance in healthcare.  

    Full Story

  • 04.12.2021  |  DECENNIAL DAY 2021, Kevin Outterson – Policy and Economic Innovations to Impact AMR

    Boston University Professor Kevin Outterson examines the economic barriers to AMR innovation and potential solutions to create a sustainable environment for antibacterial innovation to address the rise of resistance. The presentation was made at Decennial Day, April 12, 2021. Held once every ten years, the Decennial Conference reviews the advances of the previous decade and the opportunities and trends for the fields of healthcare epidemiology, infectious diseases, and infection prevention and control for the future. Co-hosted by the Society for Health care Epidemiology of America (SHEA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the 2021 Decennial Program focused on global solutions for preventing healthcare-associated infections and addressing emerging pathogens and antibiotic resistance in healthcare.  

    Full Story

  • 04.06.2021  |  Antibiotics: Netflix-style subscriptions target superbugs. One possible solution for the growing AMR crisis

    FINANCIAL TIMES | Price is not always a reliable guide to value. The financial rewards that come from developing new antibiotics are pitiful, but their importance cannot be overstated. Developers of new antibiotics have to contend with both low prices and low volumes. Innovative treatments are deployed slowly to reduce the risk of resistance developing. That makes it hard to recoup R&D costs. Those are typically around $1.5bn, about 33 times average annual sales. The current pandemic has shown the value of planning ahead of crises. Small companies have done a lot of the running, initially sustained by research grants from CARB-X and other organizations. But they have struggled to make a return. The handful of quoted innovators, such as the US’s Summit Therapeutics and India’s Wockhardt, have together lost more than half their value since 2015. Several have been forced into bankruptcy. New business models— including Netflix-style subscriptions — are being explored to overcome market failure. Urgent action is needed by governments to ensure that society has the new antibiotics and other products needed to address the rise of drug resistance.

    Full Story

  • 04.05.2021  |  Leveraging Vaccines to Reduce Antibiotic Use and Prevent Antimicrobial Resistance, A World Health Organization Action Framework: Commentary

    CLINICAL INFECTIOUS DISEASES / OXFORD ACADEMIC | This article examines the WHO Leveraging Vaccines to Reduce Antibiotic Use and Prevent AMR Framework. Written by Johan Vekemans and distinguished colleagues, the article concludes that successful health interventions depend on public confidence. Advocacy and targeted communication is needed to raise awareness about the benefits of vaccines. Policy makers, influencers as well as the scientific and medical community have a major role to play in raising awareness about the importance of protecting people against infections and curbing the threat that AMR poses to individuals, societies and global health.

    Full Story

  • 04.05.2021  |  Leveraging Vaccines to Reduce Antibiotic Use and Prevent Antimicrobial Resistance: An Action Framework and annexe to Immunization Agenda 2030

    WHO | As part of the Immunization Agenda 2030: A Global Strategy to Leave No One Behind, WHO has published an AMR-focused action framework that summarizes ways in which we should seek to use vaccines to reduce antibiotic use and to prevent the further emergence of antimicrobial resistance.

    Full Story

  • 02.22.2021  |  Researcher who Developed the Last New Class of Antibiotics Reflects on Challenges

    PEW TRUSTS | The last time scientists discovered a novel class of antibiotics that would eventually make it to market was in 1984. That drug, daptomycin, was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2003, nearly two decades after its discovery—and Richard Baltz was one of the researchers who helped develop the promising molecule into an FDA-approved drug. Baltz spoke to Pew Trusts about his experience developing daptomycin, including the challenges associated with discovering and developing new antibiotics, and some lessons from the current COVID-19 pandemic.

    Full Story

  • 02.17.2021  |  The Next Health Crisis

    PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE | Within the arena of public health battles, all eyes are peeled on COVID-19. But another health crisis looms: a war against drug-resistant infections. This Editorial quotes Jonathan Steckbeck, CEO of Peptilogics, on the challenges that antibacterial drug developers face. It urges the US government to proceed with the PASTEUR Act, which would not only restructure the US federal payment protocol, it also would boost data collection by hospitals which would receive federal funding for participating in an anti-overuse program.

    Full Story

  • 02.17.2021  |  Beating Superbugs – People Fixing the World

    BBC Podcast | A small team of Indian scientists think they’ve found a new way to kill superbugs. Listen to this moving 25-minute podcast on the ravages of antibiotic resistance in India, what motivates researchers at CARB-X-funded Bugworks and what they are doing to address the problem.

    Full Story

  • 02.03.2021  |  With all eyes on COVID-19, drug-resistant infections crept in

    NEW YORK TIMES | As COVID-19 took hold over the past year, hospitals and nursing homes used and reused scarce protective equipment — masks, gloves, gowns. This desperate frugality helped prevent the airborne transfer of the virus. But it also appears to have helped spread a different set of germs — drug-resistant bacteria and fungi — that have used the chaos of the pandemic to grow opportunistically in health care settings around the globe.

    Full Story

  • 01.25.2021  |  Antibiotic resistance: How to tackle a public health crisis: Recommendations from a Financial Times roundtable with pharma, government and NGO experts

    FINANCIAL TIMES | The Financial Times hosted a discussion in December 2020 on progress and policy options to tackle antimicrobial resistance, as part of its special report series on the Future of Antibiotics. The meeting brought together senior representatives from governments, non-profit and international organisations, academia, medical centres, the investment community and the pharmaceutical sector. This is a summary of the key discussion points and recommendations.

    Full Story

  • 01.19.2021  |  Phage therapy is gaining ground as a potential solution to antibiotic resistance but regulatory challenges may be its biggest hurdle

    BBC | Phages or bacteriophages are viruses that naturally prey on bacteria by infecting and replicating within them until they burst out, killing their microbial host. There are billions of phages on Earth, and they have co-evolved with the bacteria they prey on for millennia, helping to keep their numbers in check. Their therapeutic use was first pioneered in 1919 by Felix d’Herelle, a French-Canadian microbiologist who used phages to cure a boy suffering from severe dysentery. However, the discovery of penicillin in 1928 and its subsequent commercial production by the 1940s unleashed the antibiotic era, effectively supplanting phage therapy. Phage is attracting attention again in the search for better ways to address drug-resistant bacteria. But there remain plenty of challenges, including regulatory obstacles that need to be addressed.

    Full Story

  • 01.19.2021  |  A new state of the art institute for antimicrobial research is to open at Oxford University thanks to a £100 million donation from Ineos

    OXFORD UNIVERSITY | Ineos, one of the world’s largest manufacturing companies, and the University of Oxford are launching a new world-leading institute to combat the growing global issue of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which currently causes an estimated 1.5 million excess deaths each year- and could cause over 10m deaths per year by 2050. Predicted to also create a global economic toll of $100 trillion by mid-century, it is arguably the greatest economic and healthcare challenge facing the world post-Covid. The new Ineos Oxford Institute will benefit from the internationally outstanding facilities and expertise of Oxford University, which played the key role in the origin of antibiotics following Fleming and Oxford’s discovery and development of penicillin in the last century. The IOI will create collaborative and cross-disciplinary links across the sciences, and will be based between two sites in Oxford, linking the University’s Department of Chemistry with the Department of Zoology in the new Life & Mind Building, which is currently under construction.

    Full Story

  • 01.06.2021  |  Spurring antibiotics research, US lawmakers fear looming public health crisis: drug-resistant ‘superbugs’

    PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE | While the world grapples with the spread of COVID-19, health experts fear a much more destructive public health crisis stemming from drug-resistant infections invading communities without the weapons to fight them. The overuse of antibiotics is just one part of the problem. US legislation introduced in December 2020 by US Rep. Mike Doyle takes aim at the source: a lack of incentive for drug companies to invest in the research and development of novel antibiotics, which has led to a dearth of new drugs in the pipeline. The bill, called the PASTEUR Act, aims to encourage drug-makers by restructuring federal contracts to provide an upfront payment, instead of paying companies based on volume of drugs they produce. The proposed change in federal contracts follows a separate bill introduced last year by US Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., that increases reimbursements paid by hospitals for antibiotics. In addition to changing the federal payment model, the PASTEUR Act, introduced with Rep. Drew Ferguson, would provide funds to hospitals to support antibiotic stewardship programs. Hospitals would also be encouraged to report more data on antibiotic use and resistance to the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network.

    Full Story