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The pipeline of new antibiotics is drying up. A bill in Congress aims to change that.

February 1, 2022


Bacteria that can defeat current antibiotic drugs are sometimes called “the next pandemic.” Already, infections from them are believed to cause or contribute to more deaths worldwide than HIV/AIDS and malaria combined.

Yet the pharmaceutical industry has been slow to respond with new medicines, even with the promise of extended protection from generic competitors and other, potentially lucrative government incentives.

Drug executives complain that these incentives, created by a law passed a decade ago, don’t help new antibiotics earn much in the way of sales, dampening enthusiasm for further research.

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