Biotechs are saving the world from superbugs. Can they also save themselves?
10 June 2021
The world is now heavily reliant on small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to bring life-saving new antibiotics and antifungals to market. Accounting for 75% of all late-stage antibiotics and antifungals in development, they are pivotal in driving new antimicrobial innovation. Yet despite this, these smaller companies often face funding shortfalls and bankruptcy, leaving promising new drugs stranded on the lab bench. This report identifies how a crop of SMEs are finding new ways to survive and bring their life-saving medicines successfully through the pipeline.
What's in the report:
R&D state of play: why SMEs are powerhouses of innovation against superbugs as big pharma abandon the antibiotics market
Company profiles: how four SMEs – Bugworks, Entasis, Qpex, and Cidara – are thinking outside the box and turning to partnerships in emerging economies to reach new markets
Country focus: why China is developing into a hub for antibacterial development and commercialisation and becoming a prominent market for companies to seek partnership
Stewardship and access: why stewardship and access planning is essential to ensure antibiotics are globally accessible, especially in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), and used responsibly in order to protect their effectiveness and delay resistance
Five key takeaways: including why a stable economic and policy environment is urgently needed to incentivise more companies – large and small – as well as pharma investors to commit to antibiotics and antifungals.
This paper is published as part of the Antimicrobial Resistance Benchmark research programme. The Benchmark provides the only independent measure of how pharmaceutical companies are responding to treatment-resistant bacterial and fungal diseases. The conclusions in this paper have been drawn following an analysis of data on company partnerships and pipelines, and informed by discussions with CEOs and Executives of SMEs, investors and experts working on drug resistance, including reviews of earlier drafts of the paper.