The bacteriocin development programme will first target pseudomonas aeruginosa

Glox Therapeutics has announced it has secured £4.3m in seed funding to develop targeted therapeutics against antibiotic-resistant Gram-negative bacteria to fight against antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

The company aims to advance antimicrobial therapies to overcome resistance to traditional antibiotics.

Led by the Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund and Scottish Enterprise, the seed funding will be used by Glox to establish laboratories in Oxford and Glasgow, expand its team and advance its bacteriocin development programme.

AMR has been declared as one of the top ten threats which currently face humanity by the World Health Organization.

Occurring when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites evolve and change over time and become resistant to medicines, AMR is responsible for an estimated 1.27 million deaths every year due to the therapeutic failure of available antibiotics.

Glox is currently developing precision antibiotics that utilise engineered protein bacteriocins to develop antimicrobials to effectively and selectively target Gram-negative pathogens that have developed AMR, including Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Klebsiella pneumoniae.

The bacteriocin development programme will begin by targeting pseudomonas aeruginosa, a type of germ that can cause infections in the blood, lungs and other parts of the body after surgery.

Naturally produced by bacteria, bacteriocins contain the antimicrobial properties of certain species of microorganisms that are active against other strains of the same or related species.

The company will focus on selectively eradicating target pathogens while preserving the patient’s microbiomes to ensure a more balanced and effective treatment strategy with minimal side effects.

Dr James Clark, chief executive officer at Glox, said: “Our mission is to provide physicians and patients with highly potent, targeted antimicrobial therapies that can kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria for which there are diminishing options available for treatment.

“This seed funding… will enable us to establish laboratories and attract top-tier talent, and I’m delighted to lead the team as we embark on our pioneering bacteriocin development programme.”