Curbing AMR depends on knowing which pathogens are developing resistance and where. The pharmaceutical industry can make an important contribution in this area, and many have publicly committed to supporting efforts to increase AMR surveillance. The Benchmark found that nine of the 19 companies reporting such efforts are running or supporting AMR surveillance programmes. There are 19 programmes being run across 147 countries. Seven out of the eight research-based companies evaluated are getting involved, as well as one of the 10 generics companies, and one of the 12 biopharmaceutical companies.
Curbing AMR depends on knowing which pathogens are developing resistance and where. The pharmaceutical industry can make an important contribution in this area, and many have publicly committed to supporting efforts to increase AMR surveillance. The Benchmark found that nine of the 19 companies reporting such efforts are running or supporting 19 AMR surveillance programmes across 147 countries. These are seven of the eight research-based companies in scope, one of the 10 generics companies, and 12 of the biopharmaceutical companies.
Figure 13. (A) Nine out of 19 companies support AMR surveillance. (B) AMR surveillance programmes are being conducted in 147 countries worldwide.
The activities are diverse in terms of scale, focus and duration. For instance, GSK periodically monitors international resistance trends in community acquired respiratory infections; Wockhardt collects data from a representative sample of the entire healthcare infrastructure in India; and Pfizer’s ATLAS project tracks susceptibility and resistance patterns for a variety pathogens and medicines across more than 60 countries.
Pneumonia gets the most attention, followed by other respiratory infections, including tuberculosis. Resistance is also being tracked in a variety of pathogens considered a priority for monitoring, including S. aureus, E. coli and H. influenzae. Some programmes track a single pathogen (e.g., Johnson & Johnson’s DREAM programme, focused on M. tuberculosis), while others monitor several pathogens and medicines in the same project (e.g., GSK’s SOAR and Merck & Co., Inc.’s SMART programmes).
Sharing the surveillance data with third-party initiatives that track AMR trends is a fundamental next step. At least eight companies reported their data are presented at public conferences or published in journals, while two – Merck & Co., Inc. and Pfizer – publish their surveillance data on the Internet. GSK reported plans to publish all its surveillance data on the Internet and to collaborate with other organisations aiming to publish an online database conglomerating pharmaceutical industry AMR surveillance data.
Key challenges for ensuring that industry AMR surveillance efforts have maximum impact include increasing involvement, harmonising data, converting prevalence studies into long-term monitoring programmes and increasing collaboration with public health bodies coordinating surveillance.
For a full list of references, please download the report.