Improving data sharing to increase the efficiency of antibiotic R&D
The authors of this commentary highlight how sharing data can reduce redundancies and accelerate antibacterial R&D, citing the AMR Benchmark as "a good example of how one organisation leveraged its platform to help foster more data sharing".
The commentary summarises the threat from AMR and how it is exacerbated by the trend of big pharmaceutical companies leaving the antibiotic market, leaving smaller biotech companies shouldering the burden of antibiotic R&D. There are steps being made to address this market failure, but change is likely to take time. In the meantime, to increase the chance of scientific success for the companies that remain engaged, the authors set out the case for broader data sharing, even by companies that have now left the field.
"Such data sharing is critical to advancing antibiotic discovery efforts, because when projects are discontinued or programmes fail, treasure troves of data may be shelved, locked away or, in some cases, gone forever. Ensuring data are made available in a timely manner, regardless of whether a project continues or concludes, could make a big difference for this resource-strapped field by eliminating unnecessary and wasteful redundancy in the deployment of limited funds."
Authors: Wes Kim, Kevin Krause, Zak Zimmerman & Kevin Outterson