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Posted on 29 October 2018

The spread of antibiotic-resistant infections is one of the most serious threats in modern medicine. Fuelled by the overuse of existing medicines, the growing resistance of some bacteria to antibiotics paints the dark picture that common infections may once again become routinely fatal.

However, all is not doom and gloom. A recent study into a new antibiotic called cefiderocol has shown promising results in early clinical trials. Some are calling it a “Trojan horse” antibiotic, as it tricks bacteria into allowing it to enter, much like the Greek legend of the giant wooden horse used to sneak into Troy. Cefiderocol takes advantage of certain bacteria’s need for iron to survive, binding to the iron and piggy-backing on it as the bacteria unknowingly transport it into their cells.

The drug, created by Shionogi Inc, outperformed current antibiotics during trials on patients with severe kidney or urinary tract infections. The trial results have been reported in the Lancet Infectious Diseases journal.

Cefiderocol will need further testing and much larger trials to ensure the efficacy of the antibiotic but it is a promising development in the global crisis of drug resistance.

Mewburn Ellis attorneys Matthew Smith and Christopher Denison work with Shionogi Inc. on their IP portfolio and we are proud to have worked with them on multiple European patents protecting cefiderocol.

Matthew Smith

Contact Matthew Smith

Matthew is in our chemistry & materials patent team with experience in the oil & gas, industrial chemistry, semiconductor and transport sectors. Matthew frequently represents clients in oral hearings at the EPO, during examination, opposition and appeal proceedings. Matthew’s clients include a number of large Asian corporations and he is a regular visitor to Japan where he offers numerous seminars, lectures and workshops on European IP each year. He also provides regular in-house assistance to his Japanese clients. He has been studying Japanese since 2011. Matthew joined Mewburn Ellis LLP in 2006 qualifying as a Chartered Patent Attorney and European Patent Attorney in 2010. He joined the partnership in 2015.

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