SOUTH PLAINFIELD, N.J., Dec. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- PTC Therapeutics, Inc. (PTC) today announced the receipt of a $5 million Seeding Drug Discovery (SDD) Award from the Wellcome Trust to support the development of small-molecule drugs that target life-threatening infections caused by multidrug-resistant (MDR) Gram-negative bacteria. PTC previously received a $5.4 million SDD Award from the Wellcome Trust to support its BMI1 oncology program.
The discovery and development of new and novel antibiotics are urgently needed due to the increased frequency of bacterial resistance to marketed antibiotics in the hospital and community settings. Hospital-acquired infections present a major threat to patient health and quality of life. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that approximately 1.7 million hospital-acquired bacterial infections cause or contribute to nearly 100,000 deaths in the United States each year with similar data reported from Europe. Gram-negative bacteria are responsible for more than 30 percent of these infections. The major concern with MDR Gram-negative bacteria is there are limited options to effectively treat them.
"We are honored to expand our relationship with the Wellcome Trust through this second award," stated Stuart W. Peltz, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer at PTC Therapeutics. "This funding will support our ongoing efforts to develop novel antibiotics to treat infections caused by multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacteria."
PTC has identified a novel structural class of molecules that have potent activity against Gram-negative bacteria that are resistant to marketed antibiotics. The anti-infective program at PTC is currently in lead optimization and advancing towards identifying a Development Candidate.
About Wellcome Trust
The Wellcome Trust is a global charity dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. It supports the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. The Trust's breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health. It is independent of both political and commercial interests. www.wellcome.ac.uk
About PTC Therapeutics, Inc.
PTC is a biopharmaceutical company that applies its expertise in RNA biology and drug development to pioneer novel oral treatments for patients living with serious and life-threatening conditions. PTC's internally discovered pipeline addresses multiple therapeutic areas, including rare genetic disorders, oncology, and infectious diseases. PTC has developed proprietary technologies that it applies in its drug discovery activities and that have served as the basis for collaborations with leading biopharmaceutical companies such as AstraZeneca, Celgene, Genzyme, Merck, Pfizer and Roche. For more information, visit the company's website at www.ptcbio.com.
SOURCE PTC Therapeutics, Inc.