It seems that the most interesting projects encountered in my professional life do not fit cleanly into one category or another. However, I enjoy and find success whenever a project involves collaboration with creative and informed researchers who challenge my ideas and inspire new ones. Despite working and living far apart, my network – from Africa, Asia, Australia, North America to Europe – maintains open and lively communication. Regular and personal meetings at conferences and meetings enrich my professional life and develop strong foundations for future work.
A brief list of my current projects:
Work package leader in the EU funded FP7-HEALTH multinational project AIDA (Preserving old antibiotics for the future: assessment of clinical efficacy by a pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic approach to optimize effectiveness and reduce resistance for off-patent antibiotics). AIDA is a 5 year project (12/2011 – 11/2016) with 6 Million € funding . Three randomized clinical trials supported by an extensive pharmacokinetic, PK/PD, and bacteriological package will fill the gaps in our knowledge and provide the basis for a more effective and safe treatment with the studied old antibiotics colistin, nitrofurantoin, fosfomycin trometamol, rifampicin, oral minocycline. AIDA is the first academic, structured, co-ordinated and collaborative project to “re-develop” old antibiotics. Its impact includes revised dosing regimens, regulatory changes, and updated knowledge of 50-70 year old drugs that are increasingly used.
Linked activities: Conference on Reviving Old Antibiotics October 2014 in Vienna, Austria; publications; International Polymyxin conferences in Prato 2013 and San Diego 2015; TATFAR meeting.
Work package leader in the European IMI (Innovative Medicines Initiative) project DRIVE-AB which is a collaborative, multinational, public-private consortium with in-kind support from EFPIA partners (European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations) equivalent to one third of the total Euro 9.4 million funding awarded and is part of the IMI program Combating Antibiotic Resistance: New Drugs for Bad Bugs (ND4BB). ND4BB and DRIVE-AB represents a core element of the Action Plan against the rising threats from Antimicrobial Resistance adopted by the European Commission as an answer to the Council Conclusions and the European Parliament resolution to establish an EU-wide plan to combat antimicrobial resistance. The expected impact of this project is gaining political and public support for innovative economical models to stimulate antibiotics R&D linked to conservation measures and global access to such novel antibiotics to meet public health needs.
Partner in the IMI roject COMBACTE-MAGNET (part of the IMI program Combating Antibiotic Resistance: New Drugs for Bad Bugs, ND4BB). 34 European academic partners and 5 pharmaceutical companies are collaborating to stimulate antibiotic development in Europe. COMBACTE-MAGNET (Combatting Bacterial Resistance in Europe – Molecules against Gram-Negative Infections) will bring highly innovative studies and activities related to prevention and treatment of infections caused by multi-drug resistant Gram-negative bacteria. Costs: 168 799 580 € (IMI funding 75 340 000, EFPIA in kind contribution 91 662 413). Picture gallery.
- Policy Activities
- ECCMID 2015 Pipeline Corner
Poster at ECCMID 2015 – Pipeline Corner: Antibacterial Drug R&D
- ECCMID 2016 Pipeline Corner
Poster at ECCMID 2016 – Pipeline Corner: Innovation in antibacterial drug R&D
- Publications related to my projects
- Education and training, presentations at conferences, press coverage
- Member of the Organising Committee of the First International Conference on Polymyxins 2013 in Prato, Italy and the Second International Conference on Polymyxins 2015 in San Diego, CA, USA
Selected recent projects:
Initiated and organized the first international conference on Reviving Old Antibiotics, 22 – 24 October 2014 in Vienna, Austria. This conference provided an inspiring environment for the world’s leading experts and researchers to share and discuss our old and new knowledge of old and recently revived agents. The last day of the conference was dedicated to an extensive panel discussion with ample opportunity for input from the audience to agree on final recommendations about priority research, how gaps in our knowledge may be filled and what policy changes and which funding actions are needed. The results have been published in major peer-reviewed journals. Press, picture gallery
- Organized the publication of the results of an international consensus conference of the International Society of Chemotherapy in collaboration with the Asia-Pacific Society of Clinical Microbiology and Immunology as part of the 13th Asia-Pacific Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infection in Beijing, October 2012. A panel of international experts from Europe, the Americas and Asia were convened to discuss the issues of therapeutic options for the management of extensively resistant Gram-negative bacteria.
- Initiated a task force “Individualized Dosing” of the International Society of Anti-Infective Pharmacology (ISAP). A summary of our research has been published.
- Designed a new website for the International Society of Anti-Infective Pharmacology (ISAP) that was launched in early 2013.
- Evaluated multinational multicenter research projects submitted in response to the 3rd call of the European Innovative Medicines Initiative.
- Evaluated large NIAID proposals, proposals of various national funding agencies, of ESCMID and ISID.
- Serving as a member of the external advisory board of the EU funded project IMPLEMENT.
- Organized a consensus paper regarding protein binding of antibiotics. It has been published in AAC.
- Provided comments and suggestions regarding the consultation programme of TATFAR: Consultation on the Transatlantic Task Force on Antimicrobial Resistance (TATFAR): Combating Antibiotic Resistance in Transatlantic Cooperation.
- Developed the concept for a special issue on anti-infectives, PK/PD, dosing, resistance in Current Opinion in Pharmacology together with my colleague J. Mouton
- Assessed the opportunities, medical need, and development challenges of new antibacterial drugs