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Allergan, AstraZeneca in Global Antibiotic Pact

February 1, 2016

Will evaluate aztreonam and avibactam combo in Gram-negative infections

Allergan has entered into a global agreement with AstraZeneca to develop and commercialize ATM-AVI, an investigational, fixed-dose antibiotic combining aztreonam and avibactam. The companies will evaluate the combination to treat serious infections caused by metallo βlactamase MBL-producing Gram-negative pathogens, a difficult-to-treat sub-type of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE), for which there are limited treatments. Allergan will maintain commercialization rights in the U.S. and Canada and AstraZeneca will have commercialization rights in all other countries.

ATM-AVI is the first drug candidate to be developed under a public-private partnership agreement between AstraZeneca and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR). The goal of this strategic alliance is to develop a portfolio of drug candidates over the next five years with dual uses in treating illnesses caused by bioterrorism agents and antibiotic-resistant infections.

Aztreonam is not inactivated by MBLs, as a single agent it has limited utility because the vast majority of MBL-producing pathogens also express serine-β-lactamases that can inactivate it. With avibactam's ability to inhibit many serine-β-lactamase enzymes, aztreonam's activity is restored against pathogens that co-produce MBLs and serine enzymes, presenting a new treatment option.
"The rate of antibiotic resistance continues to increase worldwide, representing a truly global threat that requires collaboration and sustained commitment from industry and government to develop solutions," said David Nicholson, executive vice president, Global Brands R&D, Allergan. "As a leader in anti-infectives, we are dedicated to the ongoing research and development of innovative products, like ATM-AVI, for patients with difficult-to-treat infections who, today, have very few or no effective options."

"This collaboration represents an important milestone in the development of ATM-AVI. Antimicrobial resistance is a huge global health challenge, which is increasingly at the forefront of the public health agenda. We look forward to working with health authorities to help bring this much-needed new treatment option to patients," said Hans Sijbesma, managing director, Antibiotics Business Unit, AstraZeneca.