Old Antibiotics

Discovery timeline of old antibiotics

This figure illustrates that there have been no successful discoveries of novel agents since almost 30 years.

Discovery of antibiotics

Silver L L: Challenges of antibacterial discovery. Clin. Microbiol. Rev. 2011;24:71-109

This substantial discovery void has been caused by Big Pharma withdrawing from research in the area, even though there has certainly been recognition of the continuing need for new antibacterials to combat the rise of resistant organisms. The latest registered representatives of novel antibacterial classes, linezolid and daptomycin,  introduced in 2000 and 2003, respectively were first reported (or patented) in 1978 and 1987, respectively (see review by L. Silver, 2011)

Old antibiotics that have gained renewed interest for infections due to multidrug resistant pathogens with few or no treatment alternatives:

Antibiotic

Year of discovery/patent

Usage
Colistin/polymyxins

1947

Multidrug resistant Gram-negative pathogens
Fosfomycin

1969

Multidrug resistant Gram-negative pathogens
Temocillin

1977

ESBL producing enterobacteria
Nitrofurantoin

1946

Multidrug resistant UTI pathogens
Pivmecillinam

1972

ESBL producing enterobacteria
Minocycline

1972

Acinetobacter
Fusidic acid

1961

MRSA

Additional information can be found on the AIDA website.

AIDA (PRESERVING OLD ANTIBIOTICS FOR THE FUTURE) is a European FP7 funded project (Grant Health-F3-2011-278348) 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *