Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study finds few new antibiotics are in the pipeline

20.04.2004


Trend comes despite critical public health need



Despite a critical need for new antibiotics to treat drug-resistant infections and other infectious diseases, very few new antibiotics are being developed, according to a study in the May 1 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases, now available online.

To document trends, researchers evaluated Food and Drug Administration (FDA) databases of approved drugs and the research and development (R&D) programs of the world’s largest pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, by looking at the companies’ websites and 2002 annual reports. They found that FDA approvals of new antibiotics declined 56 percent during the past 20 years (1998-2002 versus 1983-1987). Looking to the future, the researchers found only six new antibiotics in the R&D pipeline out of 506 drugs being developed. One of those drugs, telithromycin, was approved by FDA this month.


Bacteria, which are treated with antibiotics, are by far the most common cause of infectious-related deaths in the United States. Because of the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria, the researchers note that there are few or no treatment options for many infections.

Although the need for new antibiotics is increasing, a number of factors make these drugs less economically attractive than drugs that treat chronic diseases. "Pharmaceutical companies appear to be more interested in developing drugs that patients take for life, such as those used to treat hypertension or arthritis," said lead author Brad Spellberg, MD, of the Research and Education Institute and Department of Medicine at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. "By comparison, antibiotics are usually prescribed for one or two weeks at most."

In addition, the researchers note that in order to prevent the evolution of resistant strains of bacteria, infectious disease physicians try very hard to limit the overuse of newer antibiotics. "This is absolutely required from a public health perspective," Dr. Spellberg said. "From the pharmaceutical companies’ perspective, it probably decreases sales for new antibiotics, making their development less attractive."

Dr. Spellberg said he believes that the lack of new antibiotics in development is caused by a complicated "systems problem," and not by irresponsibility on the part of the pharmaceutical companies, the FDA, or physicians. "Patients are in the middle of this issue, because they need new antibiotics, and it is our job to make sure that new ones come along despite the ’systems problem,’" he said.

Based on their review of the pipeline, the researchers conclude that the problem will worsen in the future, unless new incentives are developed to spur antibiotic R&D. "This may require remedies similar to approaches that have been taken in the arena of anti-cancer drugs and bioterrorism," said John E. Edwards, Jr., MD, also of Harbor-UCLA. Dr. Edwards serves on a task force of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), which has made the development of new antibiotics a top policy priority, and he has testified on the issue before Congress. IDSA is developing proposals that will be presented to Congress and the Bush administration this spring.


Founded in 1979, Clinical Infectious Diseases publishes clinical articles twice monthly in a variety of areas of infectious disease, and is one of the most highly regarded journals in this specialty. It is published under the auspices of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), a professional society representing more than 7,500 physicians and scientists who specialize in infectious diseases. For more information, visit www.idsociety.org.

Diana Olson | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.idsociety.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Multi-year study finds 'hotspots' of ammonia over world's major agricultural areas
17.03.2017 | University of Maryland

nachricht Diabetes Drug May Improve Bone Fat-induced Defects of Fracture Healing
17.03.2017 | Deutsches Institut für Ernährungsforschung Potsdam-Rehbrücke

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>