Japan government funding supports GARDP’s efforts to counter antibiotic resistance
19 October 2023
Geneva, 19 October 2023—The Government of Japan has granted additional funding to the Global Antibiotic Research & Development Partnership (GARDP) to support its vital work in developing new treatments for drug-resistant infections, and making them accessible to people who need them most.
The investment by Japan supports GARDP’s scientific affairs and discovery work as well as its clinical development activities aimed at developing treatments for serious bacterial infections in adults and children, sepsis in newborns, and sexually transmitted infections.
Japan has provided just over US$1.8 million in funding to GARDP for the period from April 2023 to March 2024. The funding is part of a one billion yen pledge to GARDP from 2020 to 2025.
“The financial investment from the Japanese government has boosted GARDP’s efforts to develop new treatments for some of the most harmful bacteria, and ensure they are made accessible to people most in need, especially women and children,” said Manica Balasegaram, Executive Director of GARDP.
Japan, which holds the G7 presidency this year, is committed to helping GARDP achieve its goals. G7 leaders and health ministers have reiterated the importance of a sustainable market for antimicrobials that promotes equitable access and stewardship, and ensures that public health needs are met. They also underscored their commitment to implementing push and pull incentives that promote antibiotic R&D and access, including GARDP and SECURE, a global initiative aimed at ensuring access to essential new antibiotics for drug-resistant infections.
“The G7 Health Ministers’ meeting in Nagasaki confirmed our need to continue strengthening international cooperation to prevent, prepare for, and respond to future pandemics as well as achieve universal health coverage,” said Eiji Hinoshita, Assistant Minister for Global Health and Welfare, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare of Japan. “We are proud to continue to support GARDP, which works toward both of these goals in its efforts to develop and provide appropriate access to treatments for drug-resistant infections for people in need.”
In March of this year, GARDP kicked off an international clinical trial in South Africa and Kenya to evaluate new antibiotic combinations for the treatment of neonatal sepsis. The trial will be expanded to other countries and regions in 2024, with a target of recruiting up to 3,000 newborns overall. Japan’s National Center for Global Health and Medicine (NCGM) is participating in the site feasibility assessment for the second part of this trial, and its clinical trial sites in Asia (excluding Japan) are expected to be used for the trial. Shionogi & Co., Ltd, is collaborating with GARDP on this project by supplying flomoxef, which is being tested as a potential candidate for new antibiotic combinations.
GARDP continues to screen chemical libraries shared by several Japanese companies, including Eisai Co. Ltd, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited, Daiichi Sankyo Co. Ltd, Sumitomo Pharma Co. Ltd, and Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation, with the aim of discovering novel compounds with antibacterial activity.
Later this year GARDP will launch its new five-year strategic plan, which will highlight the key milestones achieved to date and map out how GARDP will attain its goals for 2028 to counter AMR. The aim is to establish an ecosystem for antibiotic development, from drug discovery to ensuring that doses reach health clinics and ultimately the people that need them most, no matter where they live.