Antibiotics in late clinical development

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Abstract

Most pharmaceutical companies have stopped or have severely limited investments to discover and develop new antibiotics to treat the increasing prevalence of infections caused by multi-drug resistant bacteria, because the return on investment has been mostly negative for antibiotics that received marketing approved in the last few decades. In contrast, a few small companies have taken on this challenge and are developing new antibiotics. This review describes those antibiotics in late-stage clinical development. Most of them belong to existing antibiotic classes and a few with a narrow spectrum of activity are novel compounds directed against novel targets. The reasons for some of the past failures to find new molecules and a path forward to help attract investments to fund discovery of new antibiotics are described.

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