Global health product development partnership FIND (Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics) has announced four major diagnostics projects to combat antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in resource-poor settings.
Geneva-based Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), which already supports collaborations with more than 150 partners to fight antimicrobial resistance (AMR), announced it will for the first time launch a set strategic alliances that will tackle the main barriers in implementation of diagnostic solutions for AMR. According to estimates, currently 700,000 people die annually from infections with drug-resistant pathogens most of which in lower- and middle-income countries. Early diagnosis can help to monitor and control the spread of drug-resistant bacteria, viruses and parasites by enabling doctors to provide patients with appropriate treatment regimens.
The non-for-profit organisation will invest into four consortia that focus on diagnostic challenges relating to AMR in resource-poor settings including BD; Fondation Botnar; the Global Antibiotic Research & Development Partnership (GARDP) and its Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi); and the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) as partners.
As only 5% of febrious diseases in resource-poor countries are caused by bacterial infections but most by viral pathogens, there is an urgent need for a robust biomarker test that prevents the current overprescription of antibiotics at peripheral level in resource-poor settings. While a large number of studies on biomarkers had been done in Europe only 14% have been made in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). BD will conduct clinical studies in low- and middle-income countries once they have completed the development of their viral vs bacterial triage tests. Additionally, Fondation Botnar will develop and implement a diagnostic toolkit – “Dx in a Bx” – that can be used by frontline health workers to reach, diagnose and make treatment or triaging decisions for children with a fever in resource-limited settings, again with the goal to reduce overuse of antibiotics.
Furthermore, GARDP/ DNDi has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with FIND, to explore opportunities to complement work done by other actors in the field of diagnostic requirements of STI (sexually transmitted infections) antibiotics stewardship, and to explore ways to promote and stimulate funders to engage in relevant R&D for diagnostics. SAMRC agreed with FIND to identify collaborative opportunities for joint research, development, manufacturing, introduction and scale-up of innovative health technologies and programmes that result in the reduction of mortality and morbidity caused by AMR and tuberculosis. Individual projects will be announced soon.
“We are honoured to be working with such prestigious, capable collaborators and to have been awarded exciting grant opportunities,” said Dr Cassandra Kelly, Director of Emerging Threats at FIND.
FIND-CEO Catharina Boehme will be a speaker at 11th Berlin Conference „Novel Antimicrobials and AMR Diagnostics“