A joint project of MerLion Pharmaceuticals and the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory has received a grant from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency to study the effectiveness of an antibiotic called finafloxacin against biological threat agents.
The Singapore-based biopharmaceutical company said Wednesday the project will explore the effectiveness of MerLion’s fluoroquinolone finafloxacin against infections caused by biological threat agent Burkholderia pseudomallei.
The effort will also investigate the impact of finafloxacin against intracellular bio-threat agents such as Francisella tularensis and Yersinia pestis as well as other multi-drug resistant pathogens.
MerLion and Dstl will work to obtain the Food and Drug Administration‘s authorization on succeeding efforts to develop finafloxacin as an approved antibiotic.
The project will build on previous demonstrations that showed finafloxacin’s activity against multi-drug resistant pathogens as well as the antibiotic’s potential to mitigate bio-threat agents.
MerLion has conducted clinical trials of finafloxacin on patients with complicated urinary tract infections and pyelonephritis — showing that the drug worked more effectively than current treatment with ciprofloxacin.