Our mission: to develop precision phage therapy to treat bacterial infections

Increasing Resistance is a natural phenomenon

Antibiotic resistance is not new. Although many antibiotics have been developed over the years, bacteria have always succeeded to develop mechanisms to evade them. The increasing threat of resistance to existing antibiotics has been the major driver of the renewed interest in bacteriophage (“phage”) treatment.

Some mutations of bacteria to resist antibiotics

Propagation factors for antibiotic resistance of bacteria

An estimated 700,000 resistant infections occurs in hospitals annually 1, killing 63,000 patients2 (roughly 173 patients per day). In the USA, every year, antibiotic resistances result in 8 million additional hospitalization days at a cost of more than $20 billion3.

10 million deaths/year by 2050

 Resistance Evolution from 1980 to 2004

The resistance phenomenon has increased dramatically during the past  15 years. Overuse and poor compliance are the main reasons of this increasing prevalence of MDR infections. A recently published report forecast that this could lead to 10 million deaths/year by 2050.

Uncontrolled use in the field of intensive farming has also greatly contributed to the selection of particularly virulent bacterial strains.

This phenomenon is global and modern means of transport have facilitated the rapid spread of these resistant bacteria.

Another major consequence  of the widespread resistance to antibiotics would be that key medical (immuno-suppressing treatments of cancer) and surgical (C-section, joint implants, digestive surgery) procedures would not be anymore possible, leading to a major health crisis.

The research of new antibiotics has been fruitless for years. The economics of antibiotics, with low prices, limited usage for new molecules and difficult clinical development, are also deterrents and new alternatives are required, such as phages.

Development of precision phage therapy

Pherecydes Pharma was founded to develop phage-based treatments to treat bacterial infections. Pherecydes Pharma is now developping the concept of precision phage therapy, based on the screening of the most effective phages out of a propietary collection of phages to treat each bacterial infection, leading to indivualized treatments.

1 M. Chan. 2012 Keynote address by WHO Director-General at the conference on Combating Antimicrobial Resistance: Time for Action, Copenhagen, Denmark. Antimicrobial resistance in the European Union and the World.
2 M. Chan. 2011 Statement of WHO Director-General at World Health Day 2011. Combat drug resistance: no action today means no cure tomorrow.
3JM Hughes. 2011. Preserving the lifesaving power of antimicrobial agents. JAMA 305(10):1027-28.