Drug development pipelines for new antibiotics

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  • Thread starter SW VandeCarr
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In summary, the development of new antibiotics has slowed down in recent years, coinciding with the emergence of new challenges from resistant bacteria such as acinetobacter and imipenem-resistant klebsiella sp. Additionally, methicillin-resistant staph aureus (MRSA) is being replaced by vancomycin-resistant forms among gram-positive bacteria. This problem is exacerbated by the fact that there are currently no effective drugs for some strains of resistant bacteria, and those that do exist have significant toxicity. While gram-negative infections are primarily seen in hospitals, gram-positive infections are becoming more common in communities. The lack of progress in developing new drugs to combat these superbugs is due to the high cost and low return for pharmaceutical companies, as
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SW VandeCarr
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The drug development pipelines for new antibiotics have been drying up in recent years just as new challenges from war zones are appearing (resistant gram negative (G-)bacteria such as acinetobacter and imipenim resistant klebsiella sp). Meanwhile methicillin resistant staph aureus (MRSA) is giving away to vancomycin resistant (VRSA) forms among gram positive (G+)bacteria. In many cases there are no drugs available for some multiply resistant G+ and G- strains and those that are have significant toxicity (mostly renal). While G- infections are still primarily hospital based, G+ infections are established in many communities. Although the problem is not new, the slow down in new drug development is. The following article discusses the issues. http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/full/360/5/439

EDIT: I decided to post this after reading about a civilian in the US who just died of acinetobacter infection. It was on the Yahoo home page today. I went back to check it, and it was gone. Perhaps someone else saw it.
 
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Ygggdrasil said:
There was a recent New York Times article on this subject. Perhaps it is referencing the death you are talking about:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/27/business/27germ.html

Yes. That's the article I saw. Thanks Ygggdrasil. The reasons the pharmaceutical industry is not investing more in new antimicrobial therapy for superbugs are related to the high cost and low return for developing such specialized drugs. They nearly all have some level of toxicity and are (properly) held in reserve for the most dire cases because of this and the need to preserve effectiveness.
 
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1. What is a drug development pipeline for new antibiotics?

A drug development pipeline for new antibiotics is a process that involves several stages of research and testing to bring a new antibiotic from discovery to market. This includes identifying potential drug candidates, conducting preclinical studies, clinical trials, and obtaining regulatory approval.

2. How long does it typically take for a new antibiotic to go through the drug development pipeline?

The time it takes for a new antibiotic to go through the drug development pipeline can vary, but on average it takes 10-15 years. This includes the time for research, preclinical studies, clinical trials, and obtaining regulatory approval.

3. What are the challenges in developing new antibiotics?

There are several challenges in developing new antibiotics. One major challenge is the increasing rate of antibiotic resistance, which makes it difficult to find effective antibiotics. Additionally, the process of drug development is expensive and time-consuming. There are also regulatory hurdles and challenges in finding funding for research and development.

4. How are new antibiotics tested for safety and effectiveness?

New antibiotics go through a rigorous testing process to ensure safety and effectiveness. This includes preclinical studies in cell cultures and animal models, followed by clinical trials in humans. During clinical trials, the drug is tested for safety, efficacy, and side effects in a controlled setting with a specific patient population.

5. Why is it important to have a steady flow of new antibiotics in the drug development pipeline?

Having a steady flow of new antibiotics in the drug development pipeline is important for several reasons. Antibiotic resistance is a growing problem and new antibiotics are needed to combat it. Additionally, some infections may become resistant to currently available antibiotics, making it necessary to have new options available. A steady flow of new antibiotics also helps to address any potential shortages or discontinuations of existing antibiotics.

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