A growing list of infections – such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, sepsis and gonorrhoea are becoming harder to treat

In the report Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, Professor Dame Sally Davies, stated that:

“Tackling antimicrobial resistance requires a wide range of approaches and developing alternatives to antibiotics, in humans and animals, is critical to the fight.”

In the same report, it is predicted that by 2050, resistance to currently available antibiotics will prevent common medical procedures and operations from taking place, due to the risk of the patient developing a bacterial infection that would be resistant to treatment. There is a huge need to identify new targets and develop novel antibacterial
agents to combat this rising problem of resistance that would send us back to the medical dark ages.

To date, the majority of antibacterial drug discovery programs have focused on very specific aspects of resistance, or just a single pathogen. LifeArc is collaborating with Canada’s Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD) and the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (dstl) at Porton Down, to explore features that are common across a number of pathogens.

A growing list of infections – such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, sepsis and gonorrhoea – are becoming harder to treat.The collaboration will identify the most encouraging
areas for research from a drug discovery perspective. Once these new findings have been scientifically validated, results will be published and the most promising will advance into drug discovery programs at LifeArc.

Professor Timothy Atkins, Senior Fellow at dstl, stressed the importance of this particular collaboration: “To protect the world population against the threat of infectious disease, we need to develop novel antimicrobials that are active against a broad spectrum of pathogens. To achieve this challenging goal, we need to be working with
scientists at the forefront of their respective disciplines.” he added. “This is why we’re extremely enthusiastic about the prospect of working alongside LifeArc and CDRD to bring our individual expertise to bear on this globally important issue.”

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