CARB-X funding rounds! / The Mold That Changed The World at IDWeek!

Please note that a very interesting Quality Improvement RFP has been added to the current funding opportunities listing with an application cut-off of 6 Oct … apologies for the late posting! 

Dear All,

First up, CARB-X has at long last announced new funding rounds! As you’ll recall, CARB-X was recently funded for another 10 years by BARDA and Wellcome Trust, with NIAID also continuing to contribute in-kind services. We now have their first new funding call! Per their press release, expressions of interest can be submitted on/before 31 Oct 2022, 30 Jan 2023, or 1 May 2023 for products in any of these 3 categories (and I’ve reproduced the text from the PR on each category and then added a few comments):

  • Oral Therapeutics
    • “The scope is restricted to oral products with several syndromes and causative agents possible, including respiratory tract infections, urinary tract infections, and syndromes caused primarily by Gram-positive pathogens.
    • “In all cases, activity against multidrug-resistant organisms on the WHO and CDC bacterial threat lists is essential.”
    • Aside #1: The focus on oral therapies is an important push for the whole field as oral dosing creates a powerful intrinsic value for a new compound that would strongly support delinked reimbursement.
    • Aside #2: A convenient chart comparing the threat lists can be found at https://amr.solutions/pathogens-and-pipelines/.
  • Vaccines for Neonatal Sepsis
    • “The scope is restricted to vaccines focused on the prevention of neonatal sepsis, targeting several possible bacterial species, including Klebsiella pneumoniae, Escherichia coli (ETEC or urinary), Acinetobacter baumannii and Staphylococcus aureus.
    • “While a maternal vaccine is sought, it is expected that a commercial indication could be proposed.”
    • Aside: Vaccinating the mother to protect the baby is an established idea (e.g., for tetanus, influenza) and leads to transfer of antibodies either in utero or via breast-feeding. The idea of expanding the scope of vaccines is entirely logical. The challenge is that creating a vaccine for some of these infections may be very difficult. But, not trying is guaranteed failure!
  • Gonorrhea Products
    • “The scope is open to products that addresses Neisseria gonorrhoeae, including, for example, oral therapeutics, low-cost vaccines and rapid, point-of-care diagnostics.
    • “Products must address both drug-sensitive and drug-resistant scenarios.”
    • Aside: Drug-resistant gonorrhea is a major threat! With only two therapeutic agents and three vaccines in development for gonorrhea, we definitely need more candidates to enter the fray!

These are excellent thematic choices … I think the logic of each is pretty much self-explanatory. As to the application process, a pre-recorded video with application details will be available on October 11 at CARB-X.orgPublic webinars discussing the details of the new rounds will be held on October 19, 2022 at 7PM ET and October 20, 2022 at 8AM ET to discuss the scope of the funding rounds, application process, and to answer questions. Register for the webinars at CARB-X.orgGo CARB-X!


Second, and very apropos the new CARB-X funding rounds, you have an opportunity to attend The Mold that Changed the World if you are attending IDWeek later this month in Washington DC! This musical tells the story of Sir Alexander Fleming and his famous discovery. It was first performed at the 2018 Edinburgh Fringe Festival where it was a sell out and it is now touring the US with shows in DC (18-23 Oct 2022) and Atlanta (1-6 Nov 2022). You can preview the show via the YouTube video below … and then go here to book your tickets! See you there!

All best wishes, –jr

John H. Rex, MD | Chief Medical Officer, F2G Ltd. | Operating Partner, Advent Life Sciences. Follow me on Twitter: @JohnRex_NewAbx. See past newsletters and subscribe for the future: https://amr.solutions/blog/. All opinions are my own.

Current funding opportunities (most current list is here)

  • [NEW – SHORT TIMELINE}: RFP entitled “Building Capacity to Address Health Disparities in the United States through Antimicrobial Stewardship Telehealth & Tele-mentoring.” Sponsored by the Pfizer Global Medical Grants program, the title spells out the scope really well. Go here to apply; deadline is 6 Oct 2022.Queries can be sent to Jessica Romano, Grant Officer (jessica.romano@pfizer.com).
  • The AMR Action Fund is now open to proposals for funding of Phase 2 / Phase 3 antibacterial therapeutics. Per its charter, the fund prioritizes investment in treatments that address a pathogen prioritized by the WHO, the CDC and/or other public health entities that: (i) are novel (e.g., absence of known cross-resistance, novel targets, new chemical classes, or new mechanisms of action); and/or (ii) have significant differentiated clinical utility (e.g., differentiated innovation that provides clinical value versus standard of care to prescribers and patients, such as safety/tolerability, oral formulation, different spectrum of activity); and (iii) reduce patient mortality. It is also expected that such agents would have the potential to strongly address the likely requirements for delinked Pull incentives such as the UK (NHS England) subscription pilot and the PASTEUR Act in the US. Submit queries to contact@amractionfund.com.
  • INCATE (Incubator for Antibacterial Therapies in Europe) is an early-stage funding vehicle supporting innovation vs. drug-resistant bacterial infections. The fund provides advice, community, and non-dilutive funding (€10k in Stage I and up to €250k in Stage II) to support early-stage ventures in creating the evidence and building the team needed to get next-level funding. Details and contacts on their website (https://www.incate.net/).
  • New funding rounds from CARB-X are as described in this newsletter!
  • It’s not a funder, but AiCuris’ AiCubator offers incubator support to very early stage projects. Read more about it here.
  • The Global AMR R&D Hub’s dynamic dashboard (link) summarizes the global clinical development pipeline, incentives for AMR R&D, and investors/investments in AMR R&D.
  • In addition to the lists provided by the Global AMR R&D Hub, you might also be interested in my most current lists of R&D incentives (link) and priority pathogens (link).


Upcoming meetings of interest to the AMR community (most current list is here):

  • 4-7 Oct 2022 (Dublin, Ireland): The 2022 ASM/ESCMID Joint Conference on Drug Development to Meet the Challenge of Antimicrobial Resistance. This is an excellent meeting, especially for developers … and if you’ve missed it, the recordings from the 2021 meeting are online. Go here for details on the 2022 meeting.
  • 13-14 Oct 2022 (virtual, 8.30a-5p ET). Workshop entitled “Accelerating the Development & Uptake of Rapid Diagnostics to Address Antibiotic Resistance.” Convened by the National Academies’ Forum on Drug Discovery, Development, and TranslationForum on Medical and Public Health Preparedness for Disasters and Emergencies, and Forum on Microbial Threats (wow, say that 3 times fast!), this workshop has a broad-ranging agenda focused practical approaches to developing rapid, point-of-care diagnostics. Go here for details and to register.
  • 19-23 Oct 2022 (Washington, DC): IDWeek 2022, the joint annual meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA), the HIV Medicine Association (HIVMA), the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society (PIDS), and the Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists (SIDP). Go here for details.
  • 15-23 Oct 2022 (in person, residential, Les Pensières, Veyrier-du-Lac, France): The 6th edition of Patrice Courvalin’s fabulous ICARe residential training course covering all things AMR is on for 2022! This is a soup-to-nuts training in AMR: it is very intense, very detailed, and always gets rave reviews from attendees. Registration is open 21 Mar 2022 to 21 June 2022 and is limited, so book your slot as soon as you can. Go here for details.
  • 19-23 Oct 2022 (Washington, DC): IDWeek 2022, the joint annual meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA), the HIV Medicine Association (HIVMA), the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society (PIDS), and the Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists (SIDP). Go here for details.
  • 23 Oct 2022 (Cape Town, South Africa): Symposium entitled “Tackling AMR: How implementation research is vital in a One Health approach” sponsored by the AMR knowledge hub of TGHN (The Global Health Network). Go here for details.
  • 25-28 Oct 2022 (Stellenbosch, South Africa): The University of Cape Town’s H3D Research Centre will celebrate its 10th anniversary with a symposium covering the Centre’s research on Malaria, TB, Neglected Tropical Diseases, and AMR. Go here to register.
  • 17-20 Nov 2022 (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia): The International Congress on Infectious Diseases will take place for the first time as a hybrid event. Go here for details. 
  • 27-30 Nov 2022 (Perth, Australia): 32nd International Congress of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy is the biennial congress of the International Society of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (ISAC). Go here for details.
  • 3-7 Dec 2022 (Banff, Canada): Novel Approaches Against Emerging Antimicrobial Resistance by Keystone Symposia. Go here for details. 
  • 8-12 May 2023 (Lisbon, Portugal): 41st Annual Meeting of the European Society for Paediatric Infectious Diseases. Go here for details.

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