The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has proposed that a marketing authorisation can be granted for Zavicefta (ceftazidime / avibactam) in the European Union (EU).

New treatment option Zavicefta is a fixed combination of avibactam and ceftazidime and works against multi-drug resistant bacteria, which kills at least 25,000 patients suffering from infections caused by resistant bacteria in the EU each year due to a lack of medicines.

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Avibactam is a new beta-lactamase inhibitor, while ceftazidime is an antibiotic that belongs to the class of third generation cephalosporins, which is already approved for use in the EU.

Resistance to cephalosporins, as well as another class of antibiotics known as carbapenems has been increasing significantly, particularly in Gram-negative bacteria.

"Avibactam helps restore the activity of ceftazidime against ceftazidime-resistant pathogens by restraining the action of these enzymes."

Beta-lactamases are enzymes involved in bacterial resistance to these antibiotics.

Avibactam helps restore the activity of ceftazidime against ceftazidime-resistant pathogens by restraining the action of these enzymes.

This antibacterial agent also acts against many of the carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, an area where patients have very few options available due to treatment resistance.

The drug can be used on adult patients suffering from diseases such as urinary tract infection, intra-abdominal infection and hospital-acquired pneumonia.

It also works on infections caused by certain Gram-negative bacteria, which does not currently have many treatment options.

According to the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP), Zavicefta should be made available for patients with infections caused by Gram-negative bacteria.