‘Discovery void’ for antibiotics needs to be filled, pleas Chief Medical Officer

Rebecca Aris


The Chief Medical Officer of England and Wales warned yesterday that the health system could regress by 200 years owing to the ‘catastrophic threat’ of antibiotic resistance.

If action isn’t taken, Professor Dame Sally Davies said in her annual report, we could be seeing deaths in 20 years, caused by infections from minor surgery.

As microbes have becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics, the escalating problem has become further driven by a lack of new compounds to replace them, in what Dame Sally refers to as a ‘discovery void’.

Greater incentives should be provided to the pharmaceutical industry to invest in the research of antimicrobial drugs if we are to tackle this threat, she suggested.

If we are to secure a ‘pipeline’ of new antimicrobial drugs for the future then we must align the private and societal risks, and the costs and benefits of research and development of these agents… There are many ways to incentivise innovation, engaging the private sector, public institutions and academia. The challenge is to alter the balance of these incentives so that we have a thriving, vibrant, sustainable and safe programme of research and development into new antimicrobials.

Dame Sally Davies, Chief Medical Officer, England and Wales



Related news:

Antibiotics and drug resistance: how do we compare? (Guardian)

Chief Medical Officer calls on pharma to fill antibiotics void (Pharma Times)

Gathering momentum to tackle antimicrobial resistance (pharmaphorum)


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