Novartis division Sandoz has partnered with Ares Genetics to develop a digital anti-infectives platform to support drug development and life cycle management.
Ares Genetics is a wholly owned subsidiary of molecular microbiology diagnostics provider Curetis. Ares portfolio comprises infectious disease diagnostics and therapeutic solutions.
The agreement gives Sandoz access to Ares Genetics’ ARESdb database on antibiotic resistance genetics and the ARES Technology Platform.
The partners will combine existing microbiology laboratory approaches with advanced bioinformatics and artificial intelligence methods for the development of the digital anti-infectives platform.
With the new product, the companies intend to cost-effectively re-purpose current antibiotics and design value-added medicines to expand indication areas and overcome antibiotic resistance.
The focus will be on infections by bacteria that have developed resistance against multiple therapies.
In due course, the platform is expected to provide information about the development of new anti-infectives that are less prone to resistance.
Ares Genetics managing director and CEO Andreas Posch said: “Together with Sandoz, we are working on informing drug positioning and life cycle management using big data and artificial intelligence approaches in combination with experimental data and our extensively curated reference database on antibiotic resistance.
“We believe that our approach can substantially and cost-effectively help in overcoming antibiotic resistance with existing drugs as well as developing new drugs that are less prone to encounter resistance.”
The collaboration agreement covers the initial phases of the alliance, where Sandoz will offer certain R&D funding to Ares Genetics. The specific financial details of the deal have not been disclosed.
Estimates show that antibiotic resistance leads to 700,000 deaths globally. If left unchecked, the resistance could potentially cause more deaths than cancer by 2050.