Fighting superbugs on a global scale

Bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics at an increasingly rapid pace. Even the most powerful ‘last resort’ drugs are becoming less effective as resistance grows. The world urgently needs new treatments, diagnostics and preventatives to address the drug-resistance crisis. But innovation has not kept pace with the rise of drug resistance. The World Health Organization estimates that 700,000 people die each year from drug-resistant bacterial infection. CARB-X supports the world’s largest and most diverse antibacterial pipeline of early develop R&D projects. And it continues to grow.

What CARB-X does

CARB-X is investing more than $500 million in antibacterial R&D between 2016-2021 to support the development of new antibiotics, vaccines, diagnostics and other products. The goal is to support projects through the early phases of development through Phase 1, so that they will attract additional support for further clinical development and approval for use in patients. CARB-X focuses exclusively on high priority drug-resistant bacteria, especially Gram-negatives. Funding is restricted to projects that target drug-resistant bacteria highlighted on the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s 2013 Antibiotic Resistant Threats list, or the Priority Bacterial Pathogens list published by the WHO in 2017 – with a priority on those pathogens deemed Serious or Urgent on the CDC list or Critical or High on the WHO list.  Read more…

Where the funding comes from

CARB-X funding is provided by the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; the Wellcome Trust, a global charity based in the UK working to improve health globally; Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF); the UK Department of Health and Social Care’s Global Antimicrobial Resistance Innovation Fund (UK GAMRIF); the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and with in-kind support from National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  CARB-X is headquartered at Boston University School of Law.  Read more…

How CARB-X works

Led by executive director and principal investigator Kevin Outterson, BU Professor of Law and the N. Neal Pike Scholar in Health & Disability Law, the CARB-X team reviews applications and manages relationships with product developers and collaborators focused on advancing antibacterial research. As an accelerator, CARB-X  is unique in that it provides funding and business and scientific support for projects around the world. CARB-X non-dilutive funding is in addition to investments made by the companies themselves. CARB-X provides business and scientific support for projects through the CARB-X Global Accelerator Network, a network of 10 expert organizations in six countries. Read more…

How projects are selected

Antibacterial research is scientifically challenging, costly and takes years. Projects are selected through a competitive process. Applications are reviewed by the CARB-X Advisory Board, and final investment decisions are taken by the Joint Oversight Committee, comprised of representatives of CARB-X funders. There is always a high risk of failure in the early stages of research. But if successful, these projects, hold exciting potential in the fight against the deadliest bacteria. If only one succeeds, we will have made tremendous progress. Read more…

More information: carbxpr@bu.edu