CARB-X awards $4.55 million for Pseudomonas antibody treatment
CARB-X, an initiative to build a better pipeline of new antibiotics for treating resistant infections, announced today that it awarded Inhibrx $4.55 million to speed up the development of a new antibody to prevent and treat Pseudomonas, a hard-to-treat Gram-negative pathogen often found in health settings.
The award includes the possibility of $1.49 million more if Inhibrx, a biotherapy company based in La Jolla, Calif., meets certain development milestones with INBRX-111, which is currently in preclinical trials.
The Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator (CARB-X) is a joint effort between the United States and the United Kingdom and is funded by the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and the Wellcome Trust, with additional support from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).
Kevin Outterson, JD, executive director of CARB-X, said in a statement from the group that the Inhibrx project enriches the diversity of the CARB-X pipeline. He added that though projects in the CARB-X portfolio are in the early stages of research and come with a high risk of failure. " But if successful, these projects, including Inhibrx's antibody project, hold exciting potential in the fight against the deadliest antibiotic-resistant bacteria."
Mark Lappe, chief executive officer of Inhibrx, said company looks forward to advancing INBRX-111 rapidly though phase 1 trials.
The new award pushes CARB-X announced funding this year to $51.93 million covering 21 projects, with an additional $63.85 million if the groups meet their milestones. CARB-X said it expects to make further funding announcements later this year.
Oct 31 CARB-X press release
Study: California hospitals show progress on ASPs following new state law
The proportion of California hospitals with all of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC's) core elements for antibiotic stewardship rose from 59% to 69% following new state legislation requiring hospitals to implement additional stewardship practices, researchers with the California Department of Public Health reported yesterday in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.
To assess implementation of antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs) before and after Senate Bill 1311 went into effect in 2015, the researchers analyzed the responses of California hospitals in 2014 and 2015 to an annual survey by the CDC's National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) that included questions about antibiotic stewardship practices. The law required hospitals to institute an antibiotic stewardship policy in accordance with guidelines established by the federal government and professional organizations, to develop a physician-supervised stewardship team with at least one physician or pharmacist who had received stewardship training, and to report all stewardship activities to appropriate hospital committees.
In total, 386 of 388 California hospitals completed the surveys in 2014 and 2015. Analysis of the survey answers showed that 267 hospitals (69.2%) had all seven of the CDC's core elements for hospital ASPs in 2015, compared with 229 (59.3%) in 2014. Nationally, only 48% of hospitals that reported to NHSN in 2015 had ASPs with all seven core elements.
The authors say the extent to which the legislation affected hospital ASPs is beyond the scope of the analysis. "However, in combination with recommendations from professional and government organizations, it is likely that this legislation had a catalyzing effect on California's ASP progress," they write.
Oct 30 Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol study
Welsh deaths from resistant, healthcare-related infections continue decline
In Wales, the number of deaths from the most common antibiotic-resistant and healthcare associated infections such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) continued to decline in 2016, the BBC reported today, citing the latest statistics from the country's Office for National Statistics.
According to the results, MRSA deaths reflected a 22-year low; only 10 death certificates in 2016 noted MRSA, lower than the 14 recorded in 1994.
For Clostridium difficile, a common healthcare-associated infection that often affects older patients who are on antibiotics for other infections, Wales noted a rise in 2013, but the 79 deaths last year are the lowest since 2001, according to the report. For Staphylococcus aureus, the number of deaths in Wales last was the lowest since 1994.
The Welsh government released its Antimicrobial Resistance Delivery Plan in March. A government spokesperson told the BBC that the fall in deaths is a sign of overall progress National Health Service (NHS) Wales is making toward reducing healthcare-associated infections.
Oct 31 BBC report
C diff statistics