Consortium wins £1million to develop new family of antibiotics
5 Jul 2017
Innovate UK has awarded nearly £1million in funding to a consortium developing a platform for the production of a new family of antibiotics.
The partnership – formed between industrial biotechnology company Ingenza, the National Physical Laboratory and the University of Plymouth – is creating a new class of drugs based upon bacteriocins.
Bacteriocins are toxins produced by bacteria that are capable of destroying closely-related strains. These will be used to create derivatives that have drug-like properties but do not compromise the original molecule’s ability to kill bacteria.
The project will help tackle the challenge posed by growing resistance to certain antibiotics and has parallels with the development of penicillin; deriving several antibiotics from a single source in order to enhance range and effectiveness.
We look forward to working closely in a bid to combat the enormous problem of antibiotic resistance
Ian Fotheringham, managing director, Ingenza
Work will begin from a model bacteriocin developed at Plymouth university and harness the three partners' expertise in biotechnology, synthetic biology and bacteriocin knowledge.
Ingenza will create a synthetic biology-based bacteriocin manufacturing protocol to prepare each derivative for clinical evaluation and commercialisation.
Ian Fotheringham, managing director of Ingenza, commented: “We are delighted to have secured funding from Innovate UK for this exciting collaborative project and look forward to working closely with National Physical Laboratory and the University of Plymouth over the next three years in a bid to combat the enormous problem of antibiotic resistance.”