The new resource is the result of a collaboration between the University of Birmingham, the John Innes Centre and the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy.
It comes after the World Health Organization in 2009 declared AMR one of the biggest threats to mankind and, if not addressed, by 2050 it could kill millions of people – more than from cancer or road traffic accidents.
The free, open-access, searchable database called AntibioticDB brings together antibacterial compound discoveries that were once-promising leads from the past 40 years which have, for various reasons, been dropped or stalled, and may otherwise be overlooked by drug-development companies.
The database includes links to data on discovery, research and clinical trials, compounds awaiting approval and discontinued compounds, providing a platform for future research, antibiotic discovery and development in the hope this will inspire the lifesaving drugs of tomorrow.
The research team used a range of sources to identify compounds of interest, including key opinion leaders in the pharmaceutical industry and leading agencies in this research area. Information on each compound or drug was obtained using online searches, literature archives and interviewing prominent experts. Further information such as reasons for the lack of development is also included. The study highlights examples from the past where drugs have been dropped on safety grounds, only to be re-introduced successfully years later after new research showed them to be safe at different dosages.
While other pay-per-view resources exist for researchers, AntibioticDB is the first free database designed to appeal to small and medium-sized enterprises or academia.