Pfizer reveals its experimental antibiotic combination can treat some infections

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Pfizer, a biopharmaceutical company said on Thursday that data from late-stage trials showed its experimental combination of antibiotics was effective in treating deadly infections caused by drug-resistant bacteria. This, it said following the global rise in deaths from antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as superbugs as health regulators have called for the development of newer treatments as resistance to older antibiotics grows.

The late-stage studies compared the experimental combination of the antibiotics aztreonam-avibactam (ATM-AVI) and existing generic drug metronidazole with a combination of two older antibiotics – meropenem and colistin – to treat complicated intra-abdominal infections and types of hospital-acquired pneumonia.

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Hospital-acquired pneumonia occurs in patients at least two to three days after being admitted, or in those who have life-threatening lung infections with high mortality rates and who are on mechanical breathing machines.

According to Pfizer, the data from the studies show the antibiotic combination of ATM-AVI is effective and well-tolerated in treating infections caused by gram-negative bacteria. The cure rate in patients with complicated intra-abdominal infections with Pfizer’s combination therapy, along with the existing generic drug metronidazole, was 76.4%, versus 74% using the other antibiotics.

For patients with types of hospital-acquired pneumonia and ventilator‐associated pneumonia, the cure rate was 45.9% for Pfizer’s antibiotic combination with metronidazole, versus 41.7% for other, older treatments.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 2.8 million antimicrobial-resistant infections occur each year in the United States.


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