Procarta Biosystems receives CARB-X funding
UK–based biotech company Procarta Biosystems has been funded by CARB-X to develop a new class of antibiotics to treat Gram-negative ESKAPE pathogens.
CARB-X is awarding up to US$2.2 million in non-dilutive funding with the possibility of $7.0 million more if certain project milestones are met. The new antibiotics are based on Procarta’s oligonucleotide antimicrobial platform. While still in preclinical development, if eventually approved for use in patients, Procarta’s PRO-202 antibiotics could be used to treat serious infections associated with complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI) and complicated intra-abdominal infections (cIAI).
There is an urgent need for innovative drugs, vaccines and diagnostics targeting drug-resistant bacteria. The ESKAPE pathogens (Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter species) are responsible for a significant proportion of cUTIs and cIAIs throughout the world and represent the greatest risk of antibiotic resistance of all clinical infections.
Procarta’s PRO-202 brings to 13 the number of new classes of antibiotics in CARB-X’s active portfolio.
Part of Procarta’s award from CARB-X will come from funds provided by the UK Government’s Global AMR Innovation Fund (GAMRIF) because of the project’s predicted efficacy against Salmonella spp., Shigella spp. and Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) bacterial strains. These bacteria are the leading causes of typhoid and diarrheal disease in the developing world and have a significant in LMICs. Funding for all CARB-X projects is provided by US BARDA, Wellcome Trust, and the German research ministry BMBF.