New Collaborative Effort to Combat Multidrug-Resistant Infections with Novel Compound


BWC0977 has strong potential to effectively target the priority pathogens needed to address public health concerns.

Bugworks and GARDP company logos

Bugworks and GARDP company logos

Image credits: GARDP

The Global Antibiotic Research & Development Partnership (GARDP) and Bugworks Research Inc (Bugworks) have unveiled a collaboration agreement aimed at jointly developing an innovative compound (BWC0977). This compound exhibits broad-spectrum antibiotic activity against multidrug-resistant bacteria responsible for life-threatening infections.1

According to the GRAM study published in The Lancet, researchers highlighted Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) as a leading cause of death worldwide, with the most significant impacts occurring in low-resource settings. Understanding the burden of AMR and identifying the primary pathogen-drug combinations contributing to it is crucial for making informed, location-specific policy decisions. This is particularly relevant for initiatives related to infection prevention and control programs, ensuring access to essential antibiotics, and advancing research and development efforts for new vaccines and antibiotics. 2

3 Key Takeaways

  1. The collaboration between GARDP and Bugworks emphasizes the need to combat antimicrobial resistance, a significant global health threat particularly affecting low-resource settings.
  2. The partnership aims to develop BWC0977, an innovative compound with broad-spectrum antibiotic activity targeting multidrug-resistant bacteria, addressing key pathogens contributing to life-threatening infections.
  3. GARDP's financial commitment to Bugworks and the agreement's provisions for manufacturing and commercialization rights in low- or middle-income countries exemplify a global health collaboration dedicated to addressing antimicrobial resistance on multiple fronts.

GARDP is committing up to $20 million to Bugworks to offer technical and financial assistance for the pharmaceutical and clinical co-development of BWC0977. In exchange, Bugworks has awarded GARDP manufacturing and commercialization rights for BWC0977 in 146 countries, primarily low- or middle-income nations.1

The results of the GRAM study indicate the 6 leading pathogens contributing to deaths associated with resistance—Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. These pathogens were responsible for 929,000 deaths attributable to AMR and 3.57 million deaths associated with AMR in 2019. meticillin-resistant S aureus, a single pathogen-drug combination, caused over 100,000 deaths attributable to AMR in 2019, with 6 additional combinations each causing 50,000–100,000 deaths: multidrug-resistant excluding extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis, third-generation cephalosporin-resistant E coli, carbapenem-resistant A baumannii, fluoroquinolone-resistant E coli, carbapenem-resistant K pneumoniae, and third-generation cephalosporin-resistant K pneumoniae.2

BWC0977 has in vitro activity against a broad spectrum of pathogens that lead to serious hospital-acquired infections such as pneumonia, bloodstream infections, and complicated urinary tract infections. Among these pathogens, carbapenem-resistant Ar baumannii , and K pneumoniae, have very few existing treatment options.1

As confirmed by WHO, “The most critical group of all includes multidrug-resistant bacteria that pose a particular threat in hospitals, nursing homes, and among patients whose care requires devices such as ventilators and blood catheters. They include Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas and various Enterobacteriaceae (including Klebsiella, E coli, Serratia, and Proteus). They can cause severe and often deadly infections such as bloodstream infections and pneumonia.”3

Based on predictive statistical models, an estimated 4.95 million deaths were associated with bacterial AMR in 2019, with 1.27 million deaths directly attributable to bacterial AMR. Regionally, the all-age death rate attributed to resistance was highest in western sub-Saharan Africa, at 27.3 deaths per 100,000, and lowest in Australasia, at 6.5 deaths per 100,000. Lower respiratory infections accounted for over 1.5 million deaths associated with resistance in 2019, constituting the most burdensome infectious syndrome.2

“We are proud of our financial and non-financial support for the Bugworks programme, which began in lead optimization, delivered BWC0977 as a development candidate and ultimately commenced a first-in-human programme,” said Erin Duffy, R&D Chief at CARB-X. “Now that this compound has been primed for advanced development, we look forward to GARDP’s support in bringing this potential novel, broad-spectrum antibiotic to patients.”1

  1. GARDP. Novel broad-spectrum antibiotic compound prioritized for development in fight against AMR. Published June 11, 2024. Accessed June 12, 2024.
  2. Antimicrobial Resistance Collaborators. Global Burden of Bacterial Antimicrobial Resistance in 2019: a systematic analysis. TheLancet. Published January 19, 2022. Accessed June 12, 2024.
  3. WHO. WHO publishes a list of bacteria for which new antibiotics are urgently needed. Published February 27, 2017. Accessed June 12, 2024.
Recent Videos
© 2024 MJH Life Sciences

All rights reserved.