O antibiotic resistant intratable gonorrhea It has become a scary prospect in the United States, raising the concern that one day people may have to live with sexually transmitted bacteria.
But now there are reasons for hope. One antibiotic pill Recently developed it was effective against gonorrhea in the initial clinical trials.
Zoliflodacin has been effective in the treatment gonorrhea infections in the urinary and genital tracts and in the rectum, researchers point out.
"Gonorrhea has become resistant to all antibiotics used against it, so now we only have our last class of antibiotics that can be used," said lead researcher, doctor Stephanie Taylor, a specialist in infectious diseases. New Orleans
"This is very encouraging as new potential antibiotic"said Taylor, medical director of the Louisiana State University Sexual Health Center and CrescentCare.
The results of the study appear in the November 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. Gonorrhea rates have risen sharply in the United States in recent years.
In 2017, more than 555,600 cases were reported throughout the country, an increase of 18 percent compared to the previous year, said Dr. Susan Blank, Assistant Commissioner of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene of New York. And between 2013 and 2017, gonorrhea rates increased by 67 percent.
"It's an infection that is growing fast in the United States," he warned blank. "We observe some very marked increases, it is rarely lethal, but it can have a profound impact on the quality of life."
Currently, people with gonorrhea are treated with an injection of ceftriaxone, the only antibiotic that is still effective against bacteria, Taylor said.
"We know that either gonorrhea He has an incredible ability to develop resistance to antibiotics, "Blank said." In the current situation, an intractable gonorrhea is a real possibility. "
Untreated gonorrhea can lead to infertility in people, in addition to pelvic inflammatory disease, ectopic pregnancies and destructive arthritis, Blank said. Babies exposed to gonorrhea through their infected mothers may become blind.
"Gonorrhea also significantly facilitates transmission of HIV infection among sexual partners," said Blank, author of an editorial published along with the results of the new trial.
In this clinical trial with 141 patients, zoliflodacin was almost as effective as ceftriaxone.
Zoliflodacin cures 96 percent of venoid and genital tract infections, and 100 percent of rectal infections, compared to the effectiveness of 100 percent of ceftriaxone, researchers reported.
The new antibiotic had problems with gonorrhea infections in the throat; a dose greater than 3 grams solved only 82 percent of infections, compared to 100 percent efficacy of ceftriaxone.
"Historically, that was the way in which gonorrhea in the throat that reacted, "said Taylor." It was always difficult to deal with. "
The most common side effects were gastrointestinal and none forced patients to abandon the new drug, Taylor said. One limitation was that only 12 women participated in the trial.
This was the second of the three clinical trials needed for the approval of zoliflodacin in the United States. U. Phase 3 trials will begin next year, Taylor said. If these tests go well, the Food and Drug Administration of the United States (FDA) UU would have the available data to evaluate and approve the antibiotic by 2020. The agency has already designated the antibiotic for accelerated processing.
Although the development of zoliflodacin is encouraging, more antibiotics should be developed to continue to counteract gonorrhea and other antibiotic-resistant germs, said Taylor and Blank.
"Although this antibiotic was perfect, we know that gonorrhea will be overcome," Blank said. "We need backups, we do not know how quickly we overcome."
Doctors and public health authorities should also continue efforts to detect and treat gonorrhea, Blank said. People who are sexually active should use condoms to prevent the transmission of gonorrhea, which spreads disproportionately among Blacks, Hispanics and the Amerindians, he said.
"Control or gonorrhea In a population it requires many related activities, "Blank said.
The clinical trial was financed partly by the co-developer of zoliflodacin, Entasis Therapeutics, a subsidiary of AstraZeneca.