Polyphor‘s Murepavadin eliminated antibiotic-resistant bacteria in 11 of 12 pneumonia patients who took it, according to a small study the company conducted.
That finding was part of a presentation the Swiss company made in Vienna this week about a new class of antibiotics it is developing against drug-resistant bacteria. It calls that class Outer Membrane Protein Targeting Antibiotics, OMPTA. The presentation was at the 27th European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.
Murepavadin (POL7080) is Polypher’s first OMPTA antibiotic. It treats Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a bacteria involved in hospital-acquired pneumonia, also known as nosocomial pneumonia. The death rate from the infection is high.
Polyphor is evaluating Murepavadin in a Phase 2 clinical trial, and it will soon enter a Phase 3 trial.
Early and effective antimicrobial treatment is a critical factor in patients being able to survive a life-threatening infection. Treatment options are becoming limited, however, because of the rise of drug-resistant strains of bacteria.
Murepavadin has a unique action, and is extremely active against pathogens, characteristics that could make it a good first-line treatment against drug-resistant invaders.
Drug-resistant pathogens are “a significant threat to the most vulnerable hospital patients, including intensive care patients, those with depleted immune systems such as those with cancer, people with severe burns and premature babies in neonatal units,” Ignacio Martin-Loeches of Trinity College’s St. James Hospital in Dublin, said in a press release. “Treatment options are limited and so this new class of antibiotics is desperately needed.”
In addition to eliminating drug-resistant bacteria from 11 of 12 patients in its study, Polyphor said the multiple doses of Murepavadin they received proved safe and relatively well tolerated. The 12th died, the researchers reported.
“Antibiotic resistance is one the most serious health threats of our time, with significant global implications. New treatment options are urgently needed,” said Professor Antoni Torres of the Respiratory Institute Hospital Clinic in Barcelona. “Today’s announcement that Murepavadin has shown positive benefits in the trials offers hope for the management of this challenging patient group.”
“Murepavadin’s single pathogen focus prevents a build-up of resistance against other pathogens, which is a common problem with antibiotics,” said Glenn Dale, head of Polyphor’s early antimicrobials development unit. “Today’s findings show that our proposed dose of Murepavidin could be a promising new antimicrobial to treat PA. This year, we expect Murepavadin to enter Phase III trials and take another step to bring it to patients. In addition, our OMPTA platform could bring further new important therapies in the treatment of Gram-negative pathogens.”