World Antimicrobial Awareness Week: Antibiotics in the news 


For World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (18-24 November), DDW’s Diana Spencer provides an overview of the latest news in antimicrobial resistance and drug discovery. 

1. New class of antibiotics for TB

A first-in-class investigational antitubercular agent has shown early bactericidal activity with a low, once-daily oral dose after 14 days of treatment.  

The Phase IIa study evaluated GSK’s GSK3036656 in participants with drug-susceptible pulmonary tuberculosis. The company hopes GSK3036656 could be a component of simpler treatment regimens in the future which could help address the TB epidemic. 

Find out more: New class of antibiotics could help address the TB epidemic 

2. Potential antibiotic effective against sepsis

An international team of researchers has discovered a new antibiotic by computational analysis and deciphered its mode of action.  

The researchers also found that Dynobactin kills Gram-negative bacteria, which include many dangerous and resistant pathogens. 

Find out more: New antibiotic could kill resistant pathogens

3. Drug-resistant gut bacteria travels to lungs

An Oxford University study has provided the first evidence that antibiotic resistant bacteria can travel from the gut to the lung, increasing the risk of deadly infections.  

The study, which has been published in Nature Communications highlights the importance of preventing pathogenic bacteria from translocating from the gut to other organs where they can cause serious infections.   

Find out more: Study shows how antibiotic resistant gut bacteria cause lung infections 

4. Antibiotic-resistant priority pathogens

Research into antibiotic-resistant priority pathogens has boomed in the five years since the World Health Organisation (WHO) released a list of 12 families of bacteria that desperately need new antibiotics.  

Data from Elseveir’s Scopus database show that since 2017, 227,808 papers have been published on the 12 pathogens. The WHO released a list of bacteria for which new antibiotics were urgently needed back in 2017. It was intended to highlight the threat of antimicrobial resistance and ensure research was prioritised into the right areas.  

Find out more: Research into antibiotic-resistant pathogens sees increase since 2017 

5. The fight against AMR

Developing new antibiotics is essential to winning the fight against resistant infections, the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has said.  

In 2019, it was estimated that 1.2 million deaths globally, were due to antibiotic-resistant infections. In England, during 2019/20, there were over 90,000 hospital admissions – yet the global pipeline for new antibiotics to address this growing problem has been failing. 

Find out more: New antibiotics the only way to combat AMR, says ABPI 











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