Innogen · News · May 15, 2015

Innogen Contributes to Major Government Report on Anti-Microbial Resistance

The issue of anti-microbial resistance (AMR) is one of national and international importance, and one that if left unresolved will result in a projected loss of life of tens of millions people across the globe in the decades to come. University of Edinburgh researchers at the Innogen Institute are working to address the problem and have recently made a significant contribution to the Government’s new report addressing long-term solutions to drug-resistant infections.

Commissioned by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as a contribution to the O’Neill Commission Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, the Innogen Institute has produced a set of reports on AMR. The O’Neill Report, “Securing New Drugs for Future Generations: The Pipeline of Antibiotics” was published on 14 May 2015 and is the third in a series seeking to identify decisive world-leading solutions for AMR that prevents the problem from reaching its expected scale. This report focuses specifically on ensuring there is a sustainable global supply of antimicrobials and replacing the generations of drugs that are becoming ineffective due to resistance.

The O’Neill Report drew on Innogen’s research, in particular its recommendations for the global pharmaceuticals market. These include: the need for better foresighting of innovative business models; the importance of market-related incentives; development of precompetitive preclinical models for new therapeutic technologies; and analysis of the commercial assumptions of firms that are investing in antimicrobial research and development today.

The report also echoes Innogen’s emphasis on the importance of improved diagnostic technologies to support the more rational use of antimicrobial drugs. Innogen’s ESRC-funded research, however, also notes that effective and adaptive regulation will be key. While there is now a much more supportive regulatory environment for the development of new antimicrobial drugs, the regulatory system for diagnostic devices in the EU is currently moving in a direction that will make it more difficult for companies, particularly SMEs, to invest in the development of innovative diagnostics.

Professor Joyce Tait, Director of the Innogen Institute, stated:

“Innogen welcomes the report of the O’Neill Commission on Antimicrobial Resistance and its recommended interventions to address the problems of antibiotic development. Yet, while great strides are being made to address the pipeline of effective antibiotics, there is still much that can be done to address the entire ecosystem of the issue, both in the encouragement of appropriate and adaptive regulatory systems, and also in considering veterinary use of antimicrobials. Given that the prevention and management of infection in animals is likely to take place in future in an environment of constrained antibiotic use – there will be a need to manage and integrate veterinary approaches involving drugs, diagnosis, vaccination, breeding, biosecurity, and husbandry.

"These are issues that Innogen has explored in our reports for the ESRC and continue as a core element of the Institute’s work. Our goal has always been to generate innovation by helping to find social and economic solutions to real world problems, and we are pleased to have been able to contribute to this report.”

Innogen’s full AMR reports are published on the ESRC’s website at: www.esrc.ac.uk/news-events-and-publications/news/news-items/social-science-informing-review-on-antimicrobial-resistance/

These reports are also available on the Innogen website:

Main Report: www.innogen.ac.uk/reports/946

Supplementary Report 1 - An evaluation of drug and IVD regulation: www.innogen.ac.uk/reports/1004

Supplementary Report 2 - An evaluation of drug and IVD industry views: www.innogen.ac.uk/reports/1005

Supplementary Report 3 - Regulation-innovation interactions in the development of veterinary antimicrobial drugs and diagnostics: www.innogen.ac.uk/reports/1006

The related O’Neill Report ‘Securing New Drugs for Future Generations – the Pipeline of Antibiotics’, published on 14 May 2015, is available here.