AMR Centre signs new Trans-Atlantic deal

THE AMR Centre, the Cheshire-based research and development facility for new antibiotics and diagnostics, has signed a co-development deal with the US biotech company, Microbiotix

The Alderley Park-based organisation’s partnership with Microbiotix, a Massachusetts clinical-stage drug development company, will accelerate the development of Microbiotix’s lead bacterial virulence drug candidate.

As part of this agreement, Microbiotix and the AMR Centre will combine resources and leverage antimicrobial R&D expertise to accelerate the development of Microbiotix's T3SS (type III secretion system) inhibitor project, which was awarded up to US$3.2 million, based on successful progression through milestones, from combating antibiotic-resistant bacteria accelerator (CARB-X) in March 2017.

Under this new agreement, the AMR Centre will provide up to $1.1m of technical support including over $600,000 of project funding, alongside $1.6m of initial CARB-X funding, to identify a drug candidate to take into clinical trials.

Dr Terry Bowlin, President and CEO at Microbiotix, said: “This agreement with the AMR Centre will significantly accelerate our ability to deliver a pre-clinical candidate. We believe our T3SS inhibitors have great potential to help critically ill patients infected with drug resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

“Almost one-third of clinical isolates from these patients are resistant to three or more antibiotics, leading to treatment failures and increased mortality. Our novel inhibitors of the type III secretion system (T3SS) of P. aeruginosa, have been shown to reverse the pathogen's disruption of the host innate immune response to infection and are not subject to efflux or existing antibiotic resistance mechanisms."

Dr Pete Jackson, Executive Director of the AMR Centre, said: “"We are pleased to be working with Microbiotix to help address the critical unmet need for therapies targeting drug resistant Gram-negative bacteria.

“As a CARB-X alliance partner we are pleased to be inputting our resources alongside those of CARB-X and Microbiotix, into this exciting trans-Atlantic programme. This is very much a co-development and as such our UK based scientists are actively working on what candidates to take forward. We believe that this innovative project, which targets a World Health Organisation Priority 1 and ESKAPE pathogen, has the potential to reduce the threat of antimicrobial resistance."

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