Madam Therapeutics

News Archive

UK statistics office: life expectancy drops because of antibiotic resistance

Antibiotic resistance has caused a fall in life expectancy for the first time, the UK Office for National Statistics has said. Life expectancy in future years has been revised down after the statistics authority said that “less optimistic views” about the future had to be taken into account.

Opinions on “improvements in medical science” had declined, it said, and fears of the “re-emergence of existing diseases and increases in anti-microbial resistance” meant people would not live as long as was previously expected.

The ONS uses predictions about how medicine and science will improve to model how life expectancy will change. Under the projection made in 2010, a baby girl born in 2016 could expect to live 83.7 years. This has now been revised down to 82.9.

Life expectancy for babies born in 2060, the latest year which appears in both models, is now two years shorter than it was in the 2010 data. Baby girls born in that year were previously expected to live to 90.1 – this has now fallen to 88.3.

Baby boys are also set to live less long, with children born in 2016 expected to live to 79.2, instead of 79.9, and those born in 2060 expected to live to 85.7 instead of 86.8. The expectancies have been revised down before but this is the first time the ONS has said it believes resistance plays a part.

Experts have repeatedly warned of the dangers of antibiotic resistance, which could cause hundreds of diseases which are currently easily curable to become killers.

Anti-microbial resistance also includes the issue of viruses and funguses becoming resistance to antiviral and antifungal medication.

An increasing number of people with HIV have a version of the condition which is resistant to antiretroviral medication.

The NHS has previously warned that too many people are taking antibiotics for inappropriate conditions such as viruses, leading to greater resistance.

The World Health Organisation has said that the phenomenon is “one of the biggest threats to global health”.

Earlier this month it told farmers and the food industry to stop giving the medicines to healthy animals.

BEAM Alliance: more financial support needed for Europe’s 40 top innovator companies in antimicrobial drug development

Taking advantage of the World Antibiotic Awareness Week (WHO), the European BEAM alliance, representing 40 ‘Biopharmaceutical companies from Europe innovating in AntiMicrobial resistance’ research including Madam Therapeutics, released a position paper to acknowledge these efforts and to highlight the important role that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are playing as innovators.

The document lists ten (10) guidelines as to how antibacterial R&D could be revived and proposes specific support for SME-driven innovation in the AMR field. The alliance particularly demands that policymakers understand the specific nature and needs of SMEs to design effective PUSH and PULL mechanisms.

  1. Adequately-shaped incentive mechanisms that ultimately rewards R&D evidence
  2. Health Technology Assessment recognising the true value of SME innovation
  3. Dedicated regulatory pathways to support the specific needs of AMR projects and act as pre-qualification criteria to some PUSH/PULL incentive mechanisms
  4. PUSH incentives and funding mechanisms that are directed to SMEs, calibrated and accessible for SMEs in practice
  5. Calibrated Market Entry Rewards (MER) to ensure continuous and sustainable innovation from academics to biotech companies and to large pharma players
  6. R&D prizes and phase entry rewards as effective PULL mechanisms for SMEs to incentivise the most underserved indications in AMR
  7. Targeted tax incentives specifically addressing SMEs to incentivise private investments into AMR-focused companies and/or avoid de-prioritization
  8. Going beyond to exploit all possibilities for AMR from SMEs
  9. Support education to strengthen attractiveness of the field for R&D professionals/scientists
  10. Long term thinking and wisely usage of AMR innovations combined with appropriate diagnostics development

World Antibiotic Awareness Week, 13-19 November 2017

Every year, the WHO organised the World Antibiotic Awareness Week, This year’s theme: Seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional before taking antibiotics. Antibiotics are a precious resource, so it is important to get the right advice before taking them.

The WHO asks all stakeholders to spread the word and start planning now by:

  • Organizing events or activities in your workplace, community, school, university.
  • Spreading the word – you can find lots of information from last year’s campaign on the WAAW website, and more social media materials will be available soon. Get active on your social media accounts and get your networks involved.
  • Reaching out to your local government representatives, local leaders or influencers and encouraging them to take action on antibiotic resistance.
  • Leading by example: ensure you only take antibiotics if prescribed by a qualified healthcare professional, practice good hand hygiene, and never share or use leftover antibiotics.

We at Madam Therapeutics are highly supportive of this initiative. Awareness is absolutely critical to guarantee the sustainability of antibiotics. We will use our Twitter account to raise awareness for this campaign and trust this will help people with seeking advice from a qualified healthcare professional before taking antibiotics.

 

Madam Therapeutics has become member of the BEAM Alliance

The BEAM Alliance represents biopharmaceutical companies from Europe innovating in Anti-Microbial resistance research. BEAM works to improve the regulatory, investment, and commercial environments in Europe for research, development, approval and market viability of new products combating antimicrobial resistance.

 

Feature Article on Madam Therapeutics and LUMC partnership in the Health~Holland Update September 2017

In an interview in the September issues of the Health~Holland Update, Remko Van Leeuwen, CEO of Madam Therapeutics tells about how the PPP Allowance from the Dutch government has strengthened the collaboration with the LUMC during the fundamental stages of their collaborative research. While describing that it can be challenging for a company to be involved in the research at such an early time point, this PPP allowance mechanism provides the extra support for such collaboration. In fact, Van Leeuwen explains that he believes it can be very helpful for parties to initiate first contact between a company and a research organisation before jointly starting an R&D project.

The full interview can be viewed here

CEO Madam Therapeutics interviewed on Dutch Radio Show

On September 1st, Remko van Leeuwen CEO of Madam Therapeutics, gave a pitch and was interviewed on the “Zaken doen met” radioshow on the Dutch Radio Station BNR. “Zaken doen met” is advertised as the most entrepreneurial radioshow of the Netherlands. During the interview, Remko van Leeuwen explains the urgent need for new antimicrobial agents, and talks about the opportunities and difficulties he experiences as entrepreneur of a small biotech company. A replay of the interview can be listened to (in Dutch) via https://www.bnr.nl/player/archief/20170901113300360

AMR Industry Alliance announces to fight antimicrobial resistance

An international association of pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and diagnostics companies today announced the formation of a new alliance to monitor and drive industry efforts to fight antimicrobial resistance (AMR). The AMR Industry Alliance aims to bring together stakeholders from the life sciences industry to ensure progress is made on their commitments to reduce the development of antimicrobial resistance, invest in research and development, and improve global access to antimicrobials, diagnostic tests, and vaccines. Read more….

Leonie de Best, CBO of Madam Therapeutics, is in Paris to engage in B2B meetings at BioEquity Europe 2017

Leonie de Best, CBO of Madam Therapeutics, traveled to Paris today to be at the BioEquity Europe 2017 meeting, which is held 22-23rd May. If you are attending the conference and would like to book an appointment to meet with us, please email us on info@madam-therapeutics.com

 

Antibiotic resistance has a language problem -standardize the terminology for a better global response

Clinicians have long known that microbes such as bacteria, viruses and fungi are becoming alarmingly resistant to the medicines used to treat them. But a global response to this complex health threat — commonly termed ‘antimicrobial resistance’ — requires engagement from a much broader array of players, from governments, regulators and the public, to experts in health, food, the environment, economics, trade and industry.

A recent editorial in Nature, describes that people from these disparate domains are talking past each other. Many of the terms routinely used to describe the problem are misunderstood, interpreted differently or loaded with unhelpful connotations.

A 2015 survey by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 12 countries highlighted people’s unfamiliarity with the language of antibiotic resistance2. Fewer than half of the nearly 10,000 respondents had heard of the term ‘antimicrobial resistance’. Only one-fifth were aware of its abbreviated form ‘AMR’. By contrast, more than two-thirds knew of the terms ‘antibiotic resistance’ or ‘drug resistance’. A similar study published the same year of people in the United Kingdom — by the UK biomedical charity the Wellcome Trust — revealed comparable trends

The interchangeable use of terms by the press and by scientists in publications and meetings is likely to be counterproductive in all sorts of contexts. Take food production. In recent years, different sectors have called on countries to phase out or abolish the ‘antimicrobials’ used to promote animal growth, to protect humans from increasing levels of drug-resistant bacteria4.

Simple, clear and unambiguous terminology would help to ensure that the global effort against drug resistance is focused on the greatest immediate challenge: the rise of drug-resistant bacteria that cause common illnesses, resulting from the high use of antibiotics by humans. It could also improve people’s understanding and engagement.

Read more

Madam Therapeutics at the 18th BioEquity Europe Meeting, Paris, France

Madam Therapeutics will be at the BioEquity Europe 2017 meeting, to be held between the 22-23rd May in Paris, France. If you are attending the conference and would like to book an appointment to meet with us, please email us on info@madam-therapeutics.com