News Excerpt:

In a groundbreaking move to drive healthcare innovation, the Technology Development Board (TDB) has signed an agreement with Peptris Technologies and the Foundation for Neglected Disease Research (FNDR), for development of a novel class of antibiotics against Gram-Negative Bacterial-Infections.

More about the news:

  • The Board has sanctioned a grant of ₹75 Lakhs towards the project "ANAGRANINF - Development of a Novel Class of Antibiotics Against Gram-Negative Bacterial-Infections,"
  • The total cost of Project ANAGRANINF is ₹1.5 crores.

Technology Development Board (TDB):

  • The Technology Development Board (TDB) is a statutory body under the Department of science and technology.
  • It was constituted in 1996, under the Technology Development Board Act, 1995.
  • The primary objective of the Board is to promote development and commercialization of indigenous technology and adaptation of imported technology for wider application. 
  • The TDB is the first organization of its kind within the government framework with the sole objective of commercializing the fruit of indigenous research
  • The Board plays a pro-active role by encouraging enterprises to take up technology oriented products.
  • It provides equity capital or loans to industrial concerns and financial assistance to research and development institutions. 
    • The loan carries a simple interest rate of 5% per annum.

More about Project ANAGRANINF:

  • The Project is a collaborative endeavour to foster innovation in the field of healthcare. 
    • It is a joint effort between Indian and Spanish companies, with ABAC THERAPEUTICS SL serving as the Spanish Project Lead. 
    • It is led by the Department of Science & Technology and the Centre for the Development of Technology and Innovation, E.P.E. (CDTI), the bilateral programme aims to drive market-driven research and technology development while fostering partnerships and business-led collaborative projects between the two nations, thereby propelling innovation in healthcare forward.

Objectives of Project ANAGRANINF:

  • The main goal of the project is to create a novel lead compound,  particularly an antibiotic which is capable of inhibiting the FabI enzyme and effectively fighting against gram-negative pathogens.
  • By harnessing the power of proprietary AI tools and adhering to stringent guidelines such as the eNTRy rules, the project aims to produce a series of compounds that exhibit enhanced efficacy for tackling Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) infections.
  • The selected hit molecule MMV1578564 has exhibited promising activity against gram-negative pathogens, serving as a foundation for further research and development efforts. 
  • Further, the project aims to identify a candidate that meets WHO's innovation criteria, ensuring a new chemical structure, no cross-resistance with existing commercial classes, a novel target, and a novel mechanism of action.

Gram-negative bacteria:

  • Gram-negative bacteria are a type of bacteria characterized by the structure of their cell walls. 
  • These bacteria have a thin peptidoglycan layer sandwiched between two membranes, with an outer membrane containing lipopolysaccharides. 
    • This double-membrane structure makes them more resistant to certain antibiotics and contributes to their pathogenicity. 
    • They are harder to kill because of their harder cell wall. 
    • When their cell wall is disturbed, gram-negative bacteria release endotoxins that can make the symptoms worse.
  • Gram-negative bacteria are found in various environments, including soil, water, and within the bodies of humans and animals. 
  • Some examples of gram-negative bacteria include Escherichia coli (E. coli), Salmonella spp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Neisseria gonorrhoeae. 
  • They can cause a wide range of infections, including urinary tract infections, pneumonia, bloodstream infections, and gastrointestinal infections.


Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)

  • Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites no longer respond to antimicrobial medicines. 
    • Antimicrobials – including antibiotics, antivirals, antifungals, and antiparasitics – are medicines used to prevent and treat infectious diseases in humans, animals and plants.
  • As a result of drug resistance, antibiotics and other antimicrobial medicines become ineffective, and infections become difficult or impossible to treat, increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness, disability and death.
  • AMR is a natural process that happens over time through genetic changes in pathogens. 
    • Its emergence and spread are accelerated by human activity, mainly the misuse and overuse of antimicrobials to treat, prevent or control infections in humans, animals and plants. 

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