Antibiotic (AB) resistant bacteria are a rising public health threat and causes at least 2 million infections and 23,000 deaths each year in the United States, according to CDC. In Europe, a similar situation is expected. The cost of medical care connected to infectious diseases caused by resistant microbes is estimated to be 7 billion Euros. With no action, antibiotic resistance will develop into one of the biggest threats to global health, food security and development (WHO). The fast detection of antibiotic resistance before therapy can effectively safe lives. This is the reason why our group decided to develop a rapid antibiotic resistant detection kit that can represent a promising tool to fight against this global threat. We estimated the market for our test to be 10 000 000 US dollars in the next 10 years.
We developed a rapid assay for the detection of antibiotic (AB) resistance mechanisms in bacteria based on MALDI-TOF MS. This assay is based on the detection of a variety of enzymes responsible for the degradation of common antibiotics such as β-lactams according to their molecular weight using MALDI-TOF MS. Our rapid assay is available in a kit-like-format and detects one of the most common and dangerous resistance mechanism, the production of carbapenemases, which have the ability to hydrolyze commonly used AB like penicillins, cephalosporins, and monobactams. The detection of carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteria (CPE) is necessary for the effective prevention of the transmission of this pathogen family, including Salmonella, Escherichia coli, Yersinia pestis, Klebsiella, and Shigella.
As MALDI-TOF-MS is now available in many microbiological diagnostic laboratories all over the world (Europe, USA, Asia etc) in private companies and healthcare facilities, the kit can be used in research and diagnostic fields, in hospitals and in private companies. The economic costs of dealing with the consequences of AB resistant are estimated to be high and could cause 10 million deaths annually in 2050. We estimated the market for our test to be 10 000 000 US dollars in the next 10 years.