HHS, DOD boost superbug fight with $97M investment: 4 things to know

Federal officials upped their fight against superbugs with a $97 million investment into antibiotic development.  

Four things to know:

 1. HHS and the U.S. Department of Defense partnered with VenatoRx Pharmaceuticals to develop an antibiotic that can treat highly resistant infections, such as carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae.

 2. VenatoRx has an antibiotic candidate that has shown promise against antibiotic-resistant infections when combined with cefepime, an antibiotic already on the market. The combination could be used as an intravenous treatment for drug-resistant gram-negative infections.

 3. HHS' Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority will offer up to $20.7 million over two years to fund the drug's development through a cost-sharing agreement. Funding may be expanded to $86.8 million over six years.

 4. The DOD's Defense Threat Reduction Agency will also provide $10 million to fund research into whether the antibiotic candidate could protect against biothreat bacterial pathogens.

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