Prokaryotics Advances Its Third SBIR-funded Antibiotic Research Program into Phase 2
Union, NJ – August 16, 2021 — Prokaryotics Inc., a privately-held biopharmaceutical company engaged in the discovery and development of novel anti-infective drugs, announced today that it has successfully advanced its third Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR R44AI145409-02) grant into Phase 2. This 2-year Phase 2 award valued at nearly $2 million will fund an innovative therapeutic strategy developed by Prokaryotics aimed at hypersensitizing antimicrobial resistant (AMR) Gram-negative (GN) bacterial pathogens to the host innate immune system.
In the first phase of the program, mechanism of action and bacterial spectrum studies were conducted using recently identified small molecules that enhance the bactericidal activity of the human immune system to clear bacterial infections. Building on the success of the first phase, Phase 2 funding will be used to support continued medicinal chemistry lead optimization, pharmacology, and in vivo efficacy studies.
We are extremely grateful to the NIH and our collaboration partner, Hackensack Meridian Health Center for Discovery Innovation for supporting this program, which aims to unleash the innate immune system to effectively eradicate bacterial infections. We contend that entirely novel approaches are required to address the global threat and rising incidence of life-threatening multidrug resistant bacterial infections.
-- Terry Roemer, Ph.D., Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Prokaryotics Inc.
About Antimicrobial Resistant (AMR) Bacteria
The relentless advance of antibiotic drug resistant bacteria has raised concerns whether within the next 2-3 decades we could be facing a ‘pre-antibiotic era’ where existing antibiotics will become largely ineffective in treating serious and life-threatening infections. Indeed, the World Health Organization has projected that the impact on human health and economic costs associated with antibiotic drug resistance will rival that of global warming. New classes of antibiotics with entirely novel mechanisms of action effective against AMR bacteria are urgently needed to combat the growing threat.
About Prokaryotics, Inc.
Prokaryotics, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company founded on Merck & Co out-licensed antibiotic assets under development to treat life-threatening AMR bacterial infections. Prokaryotics leverages its deep expertise in bacterial physiology, medicinal chemistry, collaborative spirit, and scientific passion to discover and develop new classes of antibiotics targeting outer membrane biogenesis – the fundamental armor erected by bacteria to naturally withstand the effects of antibiotics and innate immunity.
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