News

Antibiotic Resistance

  • 11.19.2019  |  The Global Preclinical Antibacterial Pipeline

    NATURE REVIEWS MICROBIOLOGY | In contrast to the global clinical antibacterial pipeline, the global preclinical pipeline is characterized by diversity and intriguing science. In this in-depth analysis, the authors examine the broad range of approaches in the preclinical pipeline, focusing particularly on the innovative character of approaches and the potential to achieve significant breakthroughs in how drug-resistance is addressed. As of May 2019, 407 antibacterial projects from 314 institutions focused on Gram-negative pathogens, particularly bacteria on the WHO priority bacteria list. Some 135 projects of these projects focus on direct-acting small molecules that represent new classes, new targets or new mechanisms of action. The innovative potential is encouraging, but fragile. More work, focus and funding are needed to translate these novel approaches into effective antibacterial therapies to combat antibacterial resistance in a sustainable fashion. Authors are Ursula Theuretzbacher, Kevin Outterson, Aleks Engel and Anders Karlén.

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  • 11.13.2019  |  Antibiotic Resistant Threats in the United State 2019: Report published by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

    CDC | Drug-resistant bacterial infections are on the rise in the US, and are killing more people each year than was previously thought. According to the 2019 CDC report, more than 2.8 million antibiotic-resistant infections occur in the U.S. each year, and more than 35,000 people die as a result. In addition, 223,900 cases of Clostridioides difficile occurred in 2017 and at least 12,800 people died. The report says that previous death and incidence rates published in the last CDC report in 2013 significantly underestimated actual rates. The report also suggests that while some progress has been made in US hospitals in containing and the spread of drug-resistant bacteria and treating serious infections, more progress is needed in other health-care settings and in other areas.

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  • 11.13.2019  |  My daughter is gone but her legacy lives on through her writing and phage therapy: Diane Shader Smith

    STAT | Mallory Smith died two years ago Friday at the age of 25, two months after receiving a transplant to replace both of her lungs, which had been ravaged by cystic fibrosis and an infection that no drugs could eradicate. Her mother, Diane Shader Smith, tells the heart-wrenching story of her daughter’s illness, her writing, and the search for a phage therapy to kill the bacteria that would eventually cause her death.

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  • 11.12.2019  |  More deaths, fewer joint replacements, huge costs: The superbug crisis is already here, report warns

    NATIONAL POST | A Canadian expert panel report finds that 26% of bacterial infections in Canada are now resistant to the drugs normally used to treat them, a rate predicted to climb to 40% as drug resistance spreads.

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  • 11.12.2019  |  Drug resistance likely to kill 400,000 Canadians by 2050, report predicts

    CBC | Superbugs are likely to kill nearly 400,000 Canadians and cost the economy about $400 billion in gross domestic product over the next 30 years, warns a landmark report. An expert panel cautions in “When antibiotics fail: The growing cost of antimicrobial resistance in Canada” that the percentage of bacterial infections resistant to treatment is likely to grow significantly by 2050. “This is almost as big, if not bigger, than climate change in a sense because this is directly impacting people. The numbers are just staggering,” Brett Finlay, a University of British Columbia microbiology professor who chaired the panel. “It’s time to do something now.” Canada has been slow to react to the drug-resistance threat or to even track how many Canadians die each year from drug-resistant bacterial infections. The report suggests about 5400 people die from drug-resistant infections each year but Canada lacks an effective federal, provincial and territorial surveillance system.

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  • 11.07.2019  |  Superbugs on track to outpace cancer deaths by 2050

    WASHINGTON TIMES | Dr. Rick Bright, Director of the US Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), warns that the world needs to produce innovative drugs to address the rising threat of drug-resistant bacteria. “The threat is getting worse.” Dr. Bright said the development of new medicines is the core of our national health security and our national biodefense program as well as public health "to ensure that we have drugs that will work to protect the world from these infections and companies that are in existence to make those drugs when and where we need them and add to the supply."

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  • 11.06.2019  |  Seema Verma: CMS’s ‘expanded pathway’ for new antibiotics can help fight antimicrobial resistance

    STAT NEWS | In this article, Seema Verma, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, explains how changes to modernize US Medicare’s payment systems for antibiotics will remove roadblocks and financial disincentives that hinder antibacterial innovation. CMS has finalized a pathway for certain new antibiotics to receive additional payments and to increase payments for them so that US patients who need then will have better access to them. The agency also improved its payments to hospitals to provide them with appropriate resources to treat sick patients with drug-resistant infections. The CMS has also committed to scaling up antibiotic stewardship protocols — clinical guidelines for antibiotic prescribing — to hospitals, which is where the majority of patients with drug-resistant infections receive care.

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  • 11.04.2019  |  The story of how a determined wife and phage saved a man from a killer infection

    BBC | This is a gripping story of Tom Patterson, who was infected with a drug-resistant superbug, and his wife Stephanie Strathdee, an infectious disease epidemiologist, who was determined to not let her husband die. This is the story of her search world-wide for a phage cure. Phages are viruses that have naturally evolved to attack bacteria, but the challenge was to find phages that matched the particular form of the Acinetobacter bacterium that was infecting Tom. With trillions of phages on the planet this was no easy task.

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  • 10.23.2019  |  Major discovery and characterization of new class of antibiotics against Gram-negative bacteria

    NATURE | Polyphor and the University of Zurich researchers describe the discovery and characterization of a new class of Gram-negative antibiotics - the Outer Membrane Protein Targeting Antibiotics (OMPTA) - covering all WHO/ESKAPE pathogens including the most resistant strains of superbugs. This new class constitutes potentially a major breakthrough in the fight against antimicrobial resistance. The new OMPTA class binds dually to lipopolysaccharide and outer-membrane proteins, in particular BamA, which are both important constituents of the Gram-negative outer membrane. So far no clinical antibiotics target these key proteins, which is an unprecedented way of specifically combating life-threatening infections caused by Gram-negative bacteria. Research and drug development (POL7306) is supported in part by CARB-X and Wellcome Trust among others.

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  • 10.20.2019  |  G20 health ministers reaffirm commitment to urgent action on antimicrobial resistance (AMR)

    G20 MEETING | In a statement issued after their recent meeting in Okayama Japan, health officials from 19 countries and the European Union have reiterated their commitment to take urgent action to address the rise of drug resistant bacteria. The ministers say they will strengthen efforts to fund, implement, monitor, and update national and regional AMR action plans; enhance implementation of measures to provide clean water, sanitation, vaccination, and hygiene to improve infection control; promote antimicrobial stewardship and appropriate access to antimicrobials and diagnostics; encourage countries to strengthen AMR surveillance; and encourage investment in research and development of new antibiotics, diagnostics, and vaccines. The Okayama Declaration also contains several commitments to address major global health issues.

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  • 10.02.2019  |  A Shot in the Arm for New Antibiotics

    NATURE BIOTECHNOLOGY | Starting Oct 1, 2019, new rules from the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) came into effect, essentially removing many of the administrative and financial obstacles preventing hospitals and health care professionals from using the most effective antibiotics to treat serious drug-resistant bacterial infections in patients covered by US Medicare and Medicaid. In this in-depth article, Kevin Outterson, CARB-X Executive Director and Professor of Law at Boston University, examines the issues and welcomes the move to clear the way for the use of newer, more effective antibiotics that will improve patient care and reward much-needed antibacterial innovation.

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  • 09.17.2019  |  The End of Antibiotics?

    NORDDEUTSCHER RUNDFUNK (NDR) | Despite the fact that the spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria is one of the world’s greatest health threats, pharmaceutical companies have pulled out of investing in research and development of new antibiotics. This 30-minute in-depth documentary examines the crisis, with a particular focus on Germany’s perspective, as well as some of the systemic economic, political and financial obstacles to finding solutions.

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  • 09.17.2019  |  Combating resistance while maintaining innovation: the future of antimicrobial stewardship

    FUTURE MEDICINE | The widespread emergence of antimicrobial resistance represents a major medical crisis, and the global pipeline of innovative antibiotics to address this crisis is sparse at best. The authors look at how current US practices and policies are skewed toward savings in drug acquisition costs rather than healing patients with serious infections, and they call for the development of a comprehensive approach to antimicrobial stewardship that ensures better treatment and that helps stimulate innovation. "If continued reliance on colistin is due to restriction of more efficacious, less toxic, but more expensive agents, then we are failing in our responsibilities to severely ill, vulnerable patients.” Authors conclude that a broken commercial model for antibiotics and a pharmacy budget driven approach to stewardship, whether perceived or actual, is stifling investment and innovation in novel antibiotic R&D resulting in the real threat of the future returning to the pre-antibiotic era.

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  • 09.12.2019  |  Bacterial infections and AMR in newborns in sub-Saharan Africa

    LANCET | A systematic review and meta-analysis of data from 1980 through 2018 on bacterial infections in newborns in sub-Saharan Africa highlights the causative pathogens in bacteremia, sepsis, and meningitis and the burden of AMR. For their analysis, authors included 151 studies comprising data on 84,534 neonates from 26 countries, almost all of which were hospital-based.

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  • 09.11.2019  |  Life-saving drugs may soon become useless, experts warn as 19 untreatable superbugs are discovered in the last decade

    TELEGRAPH - As more untreatable superbugs emerge in patients, UK experts are warning that we are approaching a ’tipping point’ with existing life-saving drugs becoming increasingly useless. Strains of germs such as MRSA and gonorrhoea were able to withstand all recognized antibiotics. Infected patients survived only because doctors used unlicensed frugs in experimental combinations to keep them alive. Public Health England (PHE) warned that unless the resistance crisis is addressed, the death toll could become far worse, with ineffective antibiotics such as colistin and carbapenems ushering in pandemics of untreatable disease.

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  • 09.06.2019  |  C. diff sniffers: Scent-tracking dogs help hospitals track superbug

    CIDRAP | Dogs can be trained to sniff out superbugs. This story focuses on Angus, a 5-year-old English springer spaniel who has been trained to sniff out Clostridioides difficile, and efforts at the Vancouver General Hospital in Washington state, US, to find the bug wherever it is spreading.

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  • 09.06.2019  |  The poorer the country, the higher the threat of drug-resistant superbugs

    JOURNAL OF ANTIMICROBIAL CHEMOTHERAPY | Data from 67 countries around the world show that the prevalence of invasive infections caused by WHO’s top-priority antibiotic-resistant bacteria is inversely associated with gross national income per capita. The authors conclude that public health interventions designed to limit the burden of drug-resistant infections and spread of superbugs, should also consider determinants of poverty and inequality, especially in lower-middle income and low-income countries.

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  • 09.05.2019  |  As Threat of Antibiotic Resistance Mounts, Biotechs are Running Out of Cash and Time

    MORNING CONSULT | Drugmakers working against the clock to develop new treatments to fight drug-resistant bacteria are seeking swift congressional and regulatory action to ease financial concerns. US drugmakers are calling for meaningful comprehensive action from the US government to fix the economic problems plaguing the antibiotics market. Companies are failing because they cannot achieve commercial success with their new products, no matter how medically important they are. If the economic model remains broken, more companies will fail and the antibacterial pipeline will continue to wither, drug developers are warning.

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  • 08.30.2019  |  US Fiscal Year 2021 Administration Research and Development Budget Priorities

    US GOVERNMENT | US announces its 2021 budget priorities and lists investment in R&D into anti-microbial resistance as a priority among others. Section 4 of the document, title American Health and Bioeconomic Innovation, states that US "departments and agencies should prioritize R&D investments aimed at combatting the opioid crisis, rapid detection and containment of infectious diseases, anti-microbial resistance, chronic disease prevention and treatment, gene therapy, neuroscience, medical countermeasures and public health preparedness, eradicating HIV/ AIDS once and for all, and enhancing the independence, safety, and wellness of aging Americans and individuals with disabilities."

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  • 08.22.2019  |  CDC’s 2018 Update: Antibiotic Use in the United States, Progress and Opportunities

    CDC | The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking the prescription of antibiotics and taking steps to reduce the overuse and misuse of antibiotics. Data from 2018 show that while progress has been made in improving antibiotic prescribing and use in human health, many opportunities remain for improvement.

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  • 08.16.2019  |  Improving the estimation of the global burden of antimicrobial resistant infections

    THE LANCET | Understanding the global burden of disease from drug-resistant bacterial pathogens is essential to inform the development of action plans at national and global levels, and to gain a better understanding of the challenges related to addressing the rise of drug resistance. This article looks at approaches to improve AMR data collection and the reporting of disease and mortality at a global level.

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  • 08.05.2019  |  US Medicare payment changes aim to boost antibiotic development

    CIDRAP | In an effort to stimulate antibiotic development and improve treatment of serious drug-resistant bacterial infections, the US Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is making changes to the way it reimburses hospitals for antibiotics and treatment of antimicrobial resistance. The changes, which come into effect October 1, 2109, include modifications to the way Medicare pays hospitals for use of new antibiotics and for treating patients with antibiotic-resistant infections. The intention is to remove regulatory barriers and modify a payment structure that undervalues antibiotics and encourages the use of older, cheaper antibiotics over newer, more effective, more expensive antibiotics. The hope is that increased reimbursement will help compensate for low sales volume of new antibiotics, one of the factors that have led many pharmaceutical companies to abandon antibiotic development.

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  • 07.31.2019  |  Designing development programs for non-traditional antibacterial agents

    NATURE COMMUNICATIONS | To address the rising rates of antibacterial resistance, many 'non-traditional’ approaches are being pursued that are not small-molecule drugs or do not directly target bacteria. The authors argue that the distinction that non-traditionals should be developed in the clinic using existing regulatory frameworks. That said, if new products with non-traditional goals focused on population-level benefits were to emerge, this would warrant discussion around the extension of current paradigms. Authors of this paper include Kevin Outterson, Prof of Law at Boston University and Executive Director of CARB-X.

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  • 07.29.2019  |  Drug-resistant superbug spreading in Europe’s hospitals

    BBC NEWS | Deaths from carbapenem-resistant K. pneumoniae have gone up from 341 in Europe in 2007 to 2,094 by 2015. This is the finding of the largest study to date of carbapenem resistance in K. pneumoniae, with 244 hospitals involved from Ireland to Israel. The spread of resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae is “extremely concerning”, according to researchers from the Sanger Institute who conducted the research. “The alarming thing is these bacteria are resistant to one of the key last-line antibiotics,” Dr Sophia David, from the Sanger Institute. “It’s already worrying that we’re seeing 2,000 deaths in 2015 – but the concern is that if action isn’t taken, then this will continue to rise.”

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  • 07.22.2019  |  Five-Year Analysis Shows Continued Deficiencies in Antibiotic Development: Visualization tool lets users track the pipeline from 2014 to 2018

    PEW CHARITABLE TRUSTS | The Pew Charitable Trusts has tracked the pipeline of antibiotics in clinical development since 2014 and has aggregated updates into an interactive tool that illustrates trends in the pipeline—as drugs are either approved, discontinued from development, or remain stagnant. The pipeline reflects concerns in the scientific and medical community regarding  the dangerously low number of antibiotics in development to address current and future patient needs, particularly for treating the most urgent bacterial threats, such as Gram-negative pathogens, and those prioritized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.

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  • 07.13.2019  |  These superbug-fighting viruses are making a comeback

    THE VERGE | Bacteria-hunting viruses called phages have emerged as potentially potent weapons in the fight against superbugs. Once almost forgotten in western medicine but widely used in eastern countries like Georgia, phages are now attracting attention in scientific communities as potential treatments that can be genetically modified to kill specific bacteria without destabilizing the body’s microbiome.

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  • 06.25.2019  |  Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Infection Research Initiative White Paper

    CYSTIC FIBROSIS FOUNDATION | People with cystic fibrosis are prone to infections because of thick mucus that clogs their airways. The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is funding research to help fight these infections and has established the CFF Infection Research Initiative to help improve the detection, diagnosis, prevention and treatment of infections. CFF is planning a special section of its website to provide updates on funding and progress in each of the research focus areas. Download the CFF’s White Paper . For questions, please contact Genevieve Maul, Director of Research Communications, at gmaul@cff.org.

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  • 06.04.2019  |  Sex diseases on the rise in England

    BBC |  Gonorrhoea diagnoses in England have risen to their highest level for 40 years and jumped 26 per cent from from 2017 to 2018, sparking warning from health chiefs about the threat from drug-resistant strains. Public Health England figures how there were 447,694 sexually transmitted infections diagnosed in 2018, a rise of 5 per cent in a year. The biggest increase was in gonorrhoea where there were 56,259 cases diagnosed, 14,000 more than in 2017. A year ago, UK’s first case of super-gonorrhoea was reported. There were three cases of  drug-resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae reported in 2018 in England.

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  • 05.15.2019  |  The Death of Antibiotics: We’re Running Out of Effective Drugs to Fight Off an Army of Superbugs

    NEWSWEEK | Drug-resistant bacteria are on the rise, causing infections in patients in the US and elsewhere that cannot be treated with existing antibiotics. New approaches are needed to fight superbugs. And while government is sinking billions into R&D, the effort is not producing the new drugs and new approaches so urgently needed by patients. Potential investors and large pharmaceutical companies do not see enough profit in them to invest the funds needed to get these innovative new approaches onto the market.

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  • 05.03.2019  |  The antibiotic industry is broken

    THE ECONOMIST | World leaders should take inspiration from the entertainment business - Netflix in particular - to fix the broken antibiotics industry. By charging health care providers around the world a flat fee to access antibiotics, it would be possible to raise enough money to create market incentives that could solve the growing crisis and stimulate innovation of new antibiotics and other products targeting drug-resistant bacteria.

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  • 05.02.2019  |  Fixing the antibiotics market failure: To develop new antibiotics, upend the incentive structure, experts say

    STAT | Antibiotic resistance is not a problem that industry can fix, and industry alone cannot be relied upon to deliver the new antibiotics that are needed to treat drug-resistant bacterial infections. Finding new ways to spark investment in developing new antibiotics is urgent. Government entities around the world, investors, and industry will have to work together to find better treatments.

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  • 04.29.2019  |  U.N. Issues Urgent Warning on the Growing Peril of Drug-Resistant Infections

    NEW YORK TIMES | With drug resistance growing and few new drugs in the pipeline, the world is facing an imminent crisis that could kill 10 million people a year by 2050, a surge in global poverty and an even wider gap between rich and poor countries, the United Nations warned in a report on Monday. The authors of the group called for the creation of an independent body with the stature and funding of the UN panel on climate change. “This is a silent tsunami,” said Dr. Haileyesus Getahun, director of the U.N. Interagency Coordination Group on Antimicrobial Resistance, which spent two years working on this report. “We are not seeing the political momentum we’ve seen in other public health emergencies, but if we don’t act now, antimicrobial resistance will have a disastrous impact within a generation.”

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  • 04.21.2019  |  Could antibiotic-resistant ’superbugs’ become a bigger killer than cancer?

    CBS 60 MINUTES | Antibiotics are the miracle drug that have saves millions of lives over the years. But their continued widespread use and misuse has led to mutated bacteria that are resistant to these drugs. These so-called ’superbugs’ are killing tens of thousands of people each year and threatening public health worldwide.

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  • 04.21.2019  |  We ignore the disaster in the antibiotics market at our peril

    FINANCIAL TIMES | Achaogen’s recent bankruptcy points to a significant and frightening problem in the antibiotics marketplace. in a tough marketplace, Achaogen’s antibiotic plazomicin has struggled to gain market share even as an alternative to colistin, a cheap, 50-year-old antibiotic with severe side-effects. It is not alone. Ten of 12 antibiotics launched in the US in the past decade (not all of them breakthrough products) are achieving US sales of less than $100m a year. This barely covers the cost of keeping them on the market, let alone recouping investments. The tragedy is not that investors have lost their money. Rather, it is the signal that there is no viable route to market for new antibiotics, no matter how valuable they may be to patients and to society. We need real change now. We have made progress by supporting innovation. But now, Governments must act to establish major rewards for companies that get their innovative products approved for use in patients. The amounts that need to be injected are high — about $1bn per drug. That’s a hard sell for politicians, but it reflects the value of antibiotics. An opinion piece by Jeremy Farrar, Wellcome Trust.

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  • 04.17.2019  |  Report highlights lack of access to antibiotics in many parts of the world

    CIDRAP | A new report from the Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics & Policy (CDDEP) suggests limited access to antibiotics in many parts of the world, particularly low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), is an overlooked and under-appreciated problem. The report says that a combination of factors—from weak, underfunded health systems to unreliable supply chains and high out-of-pocket costs—create barriers to access that prevent millions of people from receiving the antibiotics they need, and has a profound public health impact. Lack of access to antibiotics kills more people than antibiotic resistance, the authors of the report say.

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  • 04.07.2019  |  In a poor Kenyan community, cheap antibiotics fuel deadly drug-resistant infections

    New York Times | The overuse of antibiotics is not just a problem in rich countries. Throughout the developing world, antibiotics are available without prescriptions. The miracle drugs credited with saving tens of millions of lives, have never been more accessible to the world’s poor, thanks in large part to the mass production of generics in China and India. And that is now contributing to the spread of drug-resistance that represents one of the world’s biggest public health threats.

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  • 04.06.2019  |  The Revenge of the Bacteria: Why We’re Losing the War – VIDEO

    NEW YORK TIMES | Interesting primer on drug resistance and the problematic overuse of antibiotics in humans and agriculture. Also looks at issues surrounding reporting on outbreaks of drug-resistant bacterial infections in the US, and how something should be done to address the superbug crisis at a global level.

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  • 03.29.2019  |  Phages: A promising alternative in the age of antibiotic resistance?

    HELIO | A California man struggled to survive a serious infection cause by Acinetobacter baumannii, which was found to be partially susceptible to only three antibiotics, and resistant to 12. In the end, it was phage therapy that sent him onto the road to recovery and potentially saved his life.

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  • 03.27.2019  |  Drug companies should be nationalized to fix antibiotics market problem: top UK antibiotics advisor says

    THE GUARDIAN | Lord Jim O’Neill says he has grown so frustrated with the ‘endless talk and no action’ on the antibiotic threat that he suggests that nationalised or state-run “utility” drug companies may be the only answer to the lack of investment in new antibiotics. The drastic measure would be intended to ensure that the development and production of new antibiotics were not at the mercy of capitalist market forces. The global industry body, the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA), said O’Neill’s suggestion  had “little to commend it … Rather than wasting time running after new pipe dreams, we call for a big push to sort out the incentives that have broad consensus – fast – before we give up,” it said in a statement to Reuters.

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  • 03.25.2019  |  Bacteria may travel thousands of miles through the air globally

    PYS.ORG.NEWS | Researchers at Rutgers University are looking into how bacteria travel around the world and can thrive in different environments. What they have found is that bacteria that live in different environments have shared DNA memory.

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  • 03.24.2019  |  The Drugs Don’t Work: What Happens After Antibiotics?

    THE GUARDIAN | Antibiotic resistance is growing so fast that routine surgery could soon become impossible. But scientists are fighting back in the battle against infection, pushing hard to advance science and convince policy makers and the pharmaceutical industry to address the issue with investment and new thinking around how to sustain the fight against drug resistance. Making a dent in antibiotic resistance will require international efforts. Some 90% of forecasted deaths from AMR will take place in Africa and Asia – the countries where antibiotic overuse, and resistant infections, are highest. The question is whether global leaders are taking action fast enough.

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  • 03.19.2019  |  Financial investments in R&D needed to advance antimicrobial innovation

    BEAM ALLIANCE | More financial incentives are needed to stimulate the antimicrobial innovation needed to address the global rise of drug resistance, argues the BEAM Alliance (Biotech companies from Europe innovating in Anti-Microbial resistance research) in a new position paper. BEAM represents over 50 European SMEs that are developing approaches to fight antimicrobial resistance on a European level. Funding instruments dedicated to the AMR community should be designed, in particular to move forward preclinical and clinical products, as a European complement to the CARB-X and BARDA initiatives.

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  • 03.15.2019  |  Frozen bags of shrimp in Canadian supermarkets could be carrying drug-resistant bacteria

    Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) | Does your local supermarket sell products carrying drug-resistant bacteria? A Canadian research team set out to discover whether frozen shrimp sold in supermarkets were tainted with superbugs. Researchers found that of the 51 bags of frozen shrimp they tested, 17% contained bacteria such as E. coli and staph aureus, that showed resistance to at least one antibiotic. Although the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) does not allow for the use of any antibiotics in domestic shrimp farming, the overuse of antibiotics in Asian shrimp aquaculture has some researchers and food inspectors concerned about the potential for antibiotic-resistant bacteria landing in Canada through imported seafood. Global demand for shrimp has exploded in recent decades, worth an estimated $39 billion US and growing. Canada alone imports about $700 million in shrimp each year, with the majority of it coming from countries like India, Vietnam, China and Thailand.

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  • 02.26.2019  |  Innovation in AMR: Patent Trends for Novel Diagnostics

    LONGITUDE PRIZE | The world needs practical affordable point-of-care diagnostics to identify pathogens and infectious diseases. This is key to reducing unnecessary use of antibiotics in human health is to move from prescribing based on symptoms to an approach which relies on biological tests. The Longitude Prize, a challenge with a prize fund of £10m and £8m pay-out to the winner, was launched in 2014 to encourage fresh thinking and innovation around diagnostics for AMR. This report tracks patent filings related to such diagnostics. The last 10 years has seen a general increase in the number of patent filings, with the highest levels reached in 2013, when 118 filings were made. Since 2013, the annual number of filings appear to be slowly declining. Much more needs to be done to stimulate AMR diagnostics innovation.

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  • 02.22.2019  |  NIAID is calling for applications for funding for the development of antibiotics, vaccines and products products to address drug resistance

    NIAID | The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) is soliciting proposals for NIAID product development contracts focused on supporting efforts to develop new vaccines or therapeutic candidates targeting antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections. NIAID is also soliciting proposals for product development contracts to mitigate or treat injuries or exposure to ionizing radiation from a radiological or nuclear incident. The deadline for submitting proposals is May 20, 2019.

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  • 02.18.2019  |  JPIAMR reports on 2017 investment in R&D

    JPIAMR | The Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Research (JPIAMR) has created a dashboard that provides on-line access to information about public investment in AMR research by 22 JPIAMR member countries, the European Commission and Wellcome Trust for the year 2017. A total investment of 1,794 M€ in research was recorded in 1,939 projects. Of these, 76.2% of the total investment was for research projects in antibiotic resistance followed by 20.6% in anti-parasitic and 3.2% in anti-fungal resistance research. A majority of the grants (57.6%) targeted priority area therapeutics, followed by diagnostics (13.1%), interventions (11.3%), transmission (7.5%), surveillance (6.7%) and environment (3.8%).

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  • 02.05.2019  |  WHO calls for help to establish an overview of the world’s pre-clinical pipeline to combat AMR, invites product developers to submit information

    WHO | WHO has launched its first data call to establish a global overview of the pre-clinical pipeline of products that target the WHP Priority Pathogens, TB and/or Clostridium difficile. WHO is inviting companies, institutions and others to submit data on their pre-clinical projects by March 18, 2019. This initiative builds on WHO’s existing global analysis of therapeutics currently in clinical development.  

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  • 02.05.2019  |  US should act now to introduce package of pull incentives to reward the successful development of novel antibiotics

    COALITION | A group of AMR industry and non-profit organizations have joined forces to urge the 116th US congress to introduce a package of financial incentives to reward the successful delivery of new antibiotics to the market. The pull incentives should aim to stabilize today’s market and ensure the viability of future development of novel antibiotics. The group includes the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the Pew Charitable Trusts, Trust for America’s Health, Antimicrobial Innovation Alliance, Antimicrobials Working Group and a number of companies conducting AMR research.

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  • 01.29.2019  |  UK shows leadership on anti-microbial resistance: The FT View

    FINANCIAL TIMES | The Financial Times Editorial Board has lauded the UK government's 5-year AMR strategy and 20-year vision as vital steps in the right direction, and has praised the UK’s leadership in establishing a new pricing model pilot to reward companies for antibacterial products approved for use. The reward would be based on value to the health system and patients, rather than commercial volume or value. The UK represents only 3 per cent of the world’s drugs market, so the pilot will not have much of an impact on its own. But as an inspiration to other countries and world leaders, if implemented effectively and funded adequately, it could be a game changer in the fight against drug resistant bacteria. Global public health depends on a coordinated response.

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  • 01.25.2019  |  UK launches new payment model for antimicrobials and aims to cut the use of antibiotics as part of an ambitious 5-year plan

    EUROPEAN BIOTECHNOLOGY | The UK government’s 5-year plan to tackle antimicrobial resistance has ambitious goals and is a positive first step forward in establishing a multinational effort to change the way antibiotic research is rewards and antibiotics are paid for. The plan announced a new model in which drug developers would be paid based on how valuable the medicines are to the patients and the health system, rather than on volume sold. The new model follows calls by DRIVE-AB and others for changes in the way antibiotic research is funded and the way antibiotics are paid for. 

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  • 01.14.2019  |  EMA Guideline on Evaluation of Medicinal Products for the Treatment of Bacterial Infections – Public Consultation Document

    EUROPEAN MEDICINES AGENCY | The EMA published an updated version of proposed guidelines intended for public consultation. The proposed guidelines reflect efforts to harmonize with other regulatory agencies. The EMA is inviting feedback until the consultation period closes July 31, 2019.

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