Urinary tract infections are one of the most common bacterial infections in the United States. They account for nearly 10 million annual visits to doctors’ offices or hospital emergency departments. However, antibiotic resistance in general is on the rise worldwide, but one especially troubling example is the rise in resistant strains of E. coli, the bacteria that cause more than 80% of UTIs. One study of E. coli taken from urine samples of U.S. patients found that the greatest increases in resistance between 2000 and 2010 were for two of the most commonly used oral antibiotics Cipro (3% to 17%) and Bactrim (18% to 24%).
Spero is developing a novel agent to treat these resistant bacteria.