Summit Therapeutics PLC (LON:SMMT)(NASDAQ:SUMM) has presented trial data at a US drug conference showing how its new series of antibiotics has high potency against drug-resistant antibiotics on the market.

The drug developer said it had presented in vivo (within living organisms) proof of concept data for its antibiotics targeting Enterobacteriaceae, a type of bacteria, in animal models of sepsis, pneumonia and urinary tract infection (UTI).

The DDS-04 series of series of antibiotics has the promise of combatting Enterobacteriaceae infections that cause more than one million infections annually in the US alone, the company estimated. 

READ: Summit Therapeutics flags potential of new antibiotic to treat drug-resistant gonorrhoea

Summit added that the efficacy data showed the DDS-04 series were comparable to marketed antibiotics in all three disease models, and built on previous in vitro (outside a living organism) studies demonstrating that the new antibiotic class had “high potency” and targeted multiple resistant and non-resistant Enterobacteriaceae strains.

“Currently marketed broad-spectrum antibiotics for Enterobacteriaceae infections are failing patients at an increasingly alarming rate due to rising antibiotic resistance,” said David Roblin, Summit’s president of research & development, in a poster presentation at the ASM/ESCMID Conference on Drug Development to Meet the Challenge of Antimicrobial Resistance on Thursday. 

He said the DDS-04 series works via a “new mechanism which has the potential to successfully cure patients by overcoming all known bacterial resistance mechanisms”. 

The mechanism involves targeted compounds that act via a novel bacterial target that has been shown to be rapidly bactericidal and highly potent across diverse Enterobacteriaceae strains.

In early afternoon trading on Thursday, Summit shares were steady at 20p.