UK’s FE News reports that a University of Plymouth spinout company, Amprologix Limited, has won a £1.2 million contract from the Department for Health and Social Care to accelerate development and scale up its lead antibiotic candidate to tackle antimicrobial resistant MRSA and related superbugs. The spinout venture was formed in 2018 to commercialize the work of professor Mathew Upton. The company received the funds as part of a Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI)—part of “Innovate UK.”
Epidermicin is derived from bacteria found on human skin, and work conducted to date shows a single dose to be as effective as six doses of the current gold standard treatment in a relevant model of MRSA infection.
Antimicrobial-resistant bacteria kill more than 25,000 people a year in Europe. The drug-resistant ‘superbug’ MRSA was named last year as a “high priority” target for antibiotic research by the World Health Organisation and it is a leading cause of healthcare associated infection (HCAI).
Professor Upton initially developed the patented technology while at the University of Manchester, which owns an equity share in the company through UMI3 Ltd, its commercialization arm. Frontier IP, the University’s commercialization partner, holds a 10% stake in return for providing a range of commercialization services. University of Plymouth is a public UK university. With 21,645 students, it is the UK’s 38th largest.