Thursday, April 7, 2011
The Centers for Disease Control says new drugs are needed to combat a rise in antibiotic resistant bacteria. Some San Diego biotech companies are working on the problem.
SAN DIEGO The Centers for Disease Control says new drugs are needed to combat a rise in antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Some San Diego biotech companies are working on the problem.
Earlier this week, an FDA panel recommended approval for Optimer Pharmaceuticals' new antibiotic to fight severe diarrhea.
Another San Diego biotech company, Trius Therapeutics, is working on a medication to fight drug-resistant staph infections.
Dr. Jeff Stein is Trius' president and CEO.
"One of the challenges in antibiotic development," Stein said, "is that because resistance grows so rapidly, drugs tend to become obsolete before their patents expire."
There have been only seven new antibiotics to enter the market since 2003. Meanwhile, health officials say drug-resistant forms of pneumonia and gonorrhea are rising.
In parts of Southeast Asia, the most dangerous of the malaria parasites has developed resistance to most of the antimalarial drugs.