FDA approves new treatment for hospital-acquired bacterial pneumonia

The FDA approved Zerbaxa June 3 for the treatment of hospital-acquired bacterial pneumonia and ventilator-associated bacterial pneumonia.

Zerbaxa, a combination of cephalosporin ceftolozane and tazobactam, was initially approved in 2014 to treat intra-abdominal infections and complicated urinary tract infections.

The new indication for the drug, given by injection, was demonstrated in a double-blind study that compared the drug to another antibacterial drug. Mortality and cure rates for Zerbaxa were similar to the treatment used as a comparison.

Hospital-acquired bacterial pneumonia and ventilator-associated bacterial pneumonia are life-threatening pulmonary infections that often affect already vulnerable patients. They are also the second most common type of hospital-acquired infection in the U.S.

Zerbaxa is manufactured by Merck.

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