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New Drugs For Bad Bugs: UF Approach Could Bolster Antibiotic Arsenal

unrealistic expectations, the requirements are going to be even higher, and it’s going to be harder and even more expensive to bring a new drug to market.?/p>

About 70 percent of bacteria found in hospitals resist at least one of the drugs commonly used to treat the infections they cause, according to the Food and Drug Administration. The agency warns that unless problems are detected early and swift action taken to find substitute drugs, previously treatable diseases could again emerge in more virulent forms. Public health officials cite antibiotic resistance as a growing problem for a host of diseases, from childhood ear infections to malaria.

Last year, the FDA published a report calling attention to inefficiencies in the drug and medical product development process, urging changes to make the process “more predictable and less costly.?The latest estimates put the cost of bringing a new product to market at $1.6 billion to $1.8 billion.

UF researchers are working on an approach known as PK/PD, which combines principles of pharmacokinetics, or an analysis of drug concentrations in the body, and pharmacodynamics, their effect on bacteria or how a drug kills bacteria.

“In the past, blood samples were taken and the serum concentration of the drug was measured and that number was used to make dosing decisions,?said Derendorf, whose work is primarily funded by the pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Sankyo. “That may not always be the right place to look. Most infections are not in the blood but in other sites of the body. Some of the recommendations we have may not be the optimal doses.?/p>

UF researchers have developed a patent-pending technique called microdialysis that uses a small needle probe to measure how much of a drug actually ends up in the fluid surrounding the bacteria at sites of infection and are among the first in the country to test the method in people. These concentrations can differ widely from those found in the bloo
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Source:University Of Florida


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