Epidemic of Drug-resistant Pathogens
Antimicrobial resistance, already a significant public health problem continues to escalate. Drug resistant infections are driving up health care costs, amplifying the severity of disease, and raising death rates associated with certain infections. Drug-resistant pathogens continue to grow at an alarming rate as these strains have gained resistance to all known antibiotics.
Each year, about 2,400,000+ healthcare acquired infections occur in the U.S. alone. Estimates indicate that these infections directly cause 30,000 deaths and contribute to an additional 70,000 deaths each year. As a causal factor in more than 100,000 deaths annually healthcare acquired infections rank as the fourth leading cause of death in the US. More than 70% of the bacteria that cause these infections are resistant to at least one of the antibiotics typically used to treat them. Nearly all of antibiotics developed by the pharmaceutical industry are analogs of class of antibiotics in use. While each is potentially useful for a short time, every analog inevitably promotes drug resistance. The world needs innovative antibiotics that act against new bacterial targets that do not demonstrate cross-resistance against existing antibacterial classes.