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€3.6 million grant awarded to screening expert

21st November 2017


Symcel, the company behind the cell-based assay tool for real-time cell metabolism measurements, calScreener, has secured €3.572 million Horizon 2020 funding to support its evaluation of improved combination testing of antibiotics against extensively drug-resistant bacteria in sepsis patients. The project runs over 28 months with a consortium of internationally recognised academic and clinical key opinion leaders from Karolinska Institutet (Stockholm, Sweden), Hospital Universitario Ramón y Cajal (Madrid, Spain), Careggi University Hospital (Florence, Italy), Rigshospitalet (Copenhagen, Denmark), IHE (Lund, Sweden) and Symcel.
 
Antimicrobial resistance is increasing rapidly – often causing infections that are extremely difficult to treat and for which no single antibiotic has an effect. Conventional reference methods are outdated, slow and unsuitable to use against the new threat of hetero- and extensively drug-resistant (XDR) bacteria. Symcel´s screening technology will be validated as a new surrogate method to correctly and rapidly determine which antibiotics really work against multi-resistant bacteria. At the core of this problem is the possibility to evaluate combinations of antibiotics against XDR bacteria in the calScreener for synergistic effects. As WHO recently reported, the world is running out of antibiotics – creating an immediate need for testing combinations of existing antibiotics against multi-resistant bacteria. At present, there is no clinically validated solution available, for multiple antibiotic resistance determination. calScreener may offer a new reference method that provides the answer.
 
Jesper Ericsson, CEO of Symcel comments: “The spread of multi-resistant bacteria is one the most severe risks globally to human health. The world is on the cusp of a post-antibiotic era where the healthcare community faces certain harmful bacteria that are resistant to all known drugs. Consequently, little can be done to treat the critically ill patients concerned. There is a large unmet need for a technology such as calScreener that measures the metabolism of bacteria. The only way to really be sure an antibiotic is effective in killing bacteria. The prospective clinical validation is a great opportunity for Symcel.”

 





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