Summit Therapeutics, a UK-based clinical-stage drug discovery and development company, claims to have discovered multiple new mechanism antibiotics against novel ESKAPE pathogen targets.
Commonly referred to as superbugs, the ESKAPE pathogens (Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Enterobacter spp.) collectively comprise the leading cause of hospital-acquired infections globally.
New classes of antibiotics are urgently needed to address these pathogens that are increasingly developing resistance to existing antibiotic drug classes.
Summit CEO Glyn Edwards said: “We believe we are building a very different antibiotics company that focuses on bringing innovation to an area of high unmet need. With new science, we believe the threat of ESKAPE pathogens and other serious infectious diseases can potentially be solved.
“At the core of our innovation is our powerful Discuva Platform.
The platform allows us to uncover possible new ways to combat the potentially deadly ESKAPE pathogens. We can then aim to exploit this knowledge through the discovery and development of targeted new mechanism antibiotics.”
Summit’s Discuva Platform utilises proprietary libraries of mutant bacteria to identify genes which are essential for bacteria to survive. Summit’s libraries provide coverage across the ESKAPE pathogens.
Through the Discuva Platform, Summit has identified essential ESKAPE pathogen genes, which could represent novel drug targets against these pathogens. Several of these targets are now the focus of Summit’s drug development programmes, with the platform having already discovered potential new mechanism antibiotics against them.
Summit R&D president David Roblin said: “We believe the identification of novel targets gives us the potential to develop the right drugs for the right bacteria, infection and patient.
“That would enable us to ensure that our antibiotics truly meet the needs of patients, their treating physicians and healthcare providers and to promote antibiotic stewardship.
“We believe this approach will afford us the opportunity to replace the current standards of care for these serious infections caused by the ESKAPE pathogens and bring potentially life-saving treatments to patients.”
Source: Company Press Release