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January 1/8, 2019

Optimized Arylomycins May Help Address Antibiotic Resistance

JAMA. 2019;321(1):21-22. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.19981

Antibiotic resistance is currently one of the biggest public health challenges, with multidrug resistant (MDR) bacteria spreading at alarming rates. A recent World Health Organization report reveals widespread occurrence of antibiotic resistance among 500 000 people with suspected bacterial infections across 22 countries.

Despite the seriousness of the problem, it has been more than 50 years since a new antibiotic class has been approved to treat gram-negative bacteria. “The situation is particularly worrisome for a group of gram-negative bacteria found predominantly in hospitals. Without an entirely new way to combat them, these bugs pose a serious threat to a vulnerable population,” said Peter Smith, PhD, a scientist in the Department of Infectious Disease at Genentech, in South San Francisco.