International doctors tapped to develop Melioidosis treatments

Soligenix, Inc., recently assembled an international team of doctors to research and develop pharmaceutical treatments for melioidosis.

Melioidosis, an infection caused by the bacterium Burkholderia psedomallei, is resistant to most antibiotics and can be fatal. Highest concentrations of the infection have been reported in Southeast Asia, South America, Africa, the Middle East, India and parts of Australia.

"Melioidosis is expected to increase worldwide in parallel with increasing incidences of diabetes," Mahidol-Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit Head Dr. Direk Limmathurotsakul said. "The mortality rate associated with this infection highlights the need for more effective strategies and the risk posed by this commonly misidentified organism."

Limmathurotsakul is among the four doctors tapped by Soligenix to serve on the Scientific Advisory Board. Also on the SAB are Dr. Bart Currie, head of the Royal Darwin Hospital infectious disease department; Dr. David AB Dance, consultant microbiologist at the Lao-Oxford-Mahosot-Wellcome Trust Research Unit; and Dr. W. Joost Wiersinga, post-doctoral researcher at the Center for Infection and Immunity and the Center for Experimental Molecular Medicine.

SAB will be tasked with research and development of SGX943 and SBX101, drugs that will be engineered to treat melioidosis.

"The development of both SGX943 and SGX101, in collaboration with our partner, Intrexon, as a potential treatments for melioidosis represent what we believe to be unique approaches to offering life-saving therapy in endemic regions and in response to the potential." Soligenix CEO and President Dr. Christopher Schraber said.