Amicrobe, Inc. announces receipt of $2.48M award from CARB-X to accelerate development of Amicidin-β for treatment of life-threatening infections in surgery and trauma
An antimicrobial applied directly to tissues, Amicidin-β combines broad, rapid microbicidal activity with beneficial physical properties to enhance intrawound performance and safety.
CARB-X award adds support for Amicrobe's innovative technology, which is currently backed by two active Department of Defense assistance agreements and by private investors.
CARLSBAD, CA - OCTOBER 24, 2017 - Amicrobe, Inc. announced today receipt of an award from CARB-X of $2.48M to accelerate the preclinical development of Amicidin-β, a novel topically applied antimicrobial for the treatment of multidrug-resistant bacteria. Contingent on the achievement of milestones, Amicrobe may receive an additional $3.76M (for a total of up to $6.24M) to support a Phase 1 clinical trial in patients with periprosthetic joint infection.
Amicrobe's CEO and CSO, Michael P. Bevilacqua, M.D., Ph.D., stated: "We are in the era of antibiotic resistance, and it is essential that the R&D community brings forth new technologies and products to prevent and treat life-threatening infections. Nowhere are the challenges more critical than in the fields of surgery and trauma. We are very pleased to receive the recognition and support of CARB-X to accelerate our Amicidin-β program."
Built by iterative design and testing, Amicidin-β is a novel biological therapeutic (amino acid polymer) being developed for treatment of life-threatening infections, especially those involving foreign bodies and biofilms. Key features include: (1) Broad and rapid microbicidal activity against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria (including multidrug resistant strains), as well as yeast; (2) Surfactant properties for enhanced anti-biofilm effects; and (3) Easy removal by irrigation and bioresorbability when left in place. Amicidin-β is produced using robust polymer methods, which should enable large-scale, cost-effective manufacturing. It is protected by multiple US and international issued and pending patents.
CARB-X's portfolio is the world's largest and most scientifically diverse portfolio of early development antibiotics and rapid diagnostics to treat the most serious drug-resistant bacterial infections, often referred to as superbugs. CARB-X, which stands for Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator, was launched in July 2016. It currently funds projects in 6 countries and is working to expand its pipeline with the best science from around the world.
Professor Timothy Deming, PhD, biomaterials expert and Amicrobe co-founder, stated "Our approach combines bioengineering design with state-of-the-art materials science to build innovative products for prevention and treatment of infection. After years of research developing our technology platform, I'm excited about the advances in product development by Amicrobe and the support of CARB-X that brings us closer to commercialization and saving lives."
If it successfully reaches the market, Amicidin-β could potentially be used to treat contaminated and infected tissues in a wide variety of settings. High-impact applications may involve treatment of surgical site infections and traumatic wound infections. Civilian and military uses are anticipated. "Antibiotic-resistant infections are a real and growing problem in all major surgical procedures and trauma, including those of orthopedics." says Ross Wilkins, MD, a world-recognized orthopedic surgeon and advisor to Amicrobe. "It's great to see the Amicidin-β program headed toward the clinic. If this product line is as successful as predicted from the preclinical work it will revolutionize the prevention and treatment of infections in humans and animals."
In announcing the award, Kevin Outterson, Executive Director of CARB-X said: "The addition of the Amicidin-β program, which represents the first topically applied antimicrobial in the CARB-X portfolio, expands the rich diversity of our pipeline and reflects a novel approach against drug-resistant infections. The Powered by CARB-X portfolio now has 20 projects including the Amicrobe project. These projects are in the early stages of research, and there is always a high risk of failure. But if successful, they hold exciting potential in the treatment of the deadliest drug-resistant bacteria."
CARB-X is a public-private partnership devoted to early stage antibacterial R&D. Funded by BARDA and Wellcome Trust, with in-kind support from NIAID, CARB-X will spend up to $455 million from 2016-2021 to support innovative antibiotics, vaccines and rapid diagnostics from 'hit-to-lead' stage through Phase 1 clinical trials. CARB-X focuses on high priority drug-resistant bacteria, especially Gram-negatives, and supports the world's largest R&D portfolio in the fight against drug resistance. CARB-X is led by Boston University. Other partners include the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, MassBio, the California Life Sciences Institute and RTI International. For more information, please visit www.carb-x.org and follow us on Twitter @CARB_X.