Targeted Nitroxoline Delivery for Treatment of Multidrug-resistant Pathogens (TANDEM)


Bacteria and other disease-causing organisms that can no longer be controlled or killed with medicines are called multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs). MDROs pose a major problem to the healthcare system as they can cause severe infections and affect the weakest, in particular young children, the elderly or people with health conditions such as chronic lung, heart, and kidney disease.

In Europe, MDROs cause approximately 670,000 infections per year. 33,000 patients do not survive the infection due to the lack of treatment options.

Our aim is to develop a much-needed new strategy for the treatment of MDROs. To this end, we have designed a ‘nitroxoline shuttle’. Nitroxoline is an antibiotic drug that effectively kills a broad variety of bacteria; however, its use is limited to bladder infections due to its inability of reaching other parts of the human body. The ‘shuttle’ is a chemical substance that, when linked to nitroxoline, will allow to safely transport this powerful antibiotic to bacteria in various parts of the human body. In the project, we will manufacture the ‘nitroxoline shuttle’ and carry out tests to characterise its ability to kill bacteria in a targeted manner.

Project partners

  • Thomas Wichelhaus, Goethe-University, Germany (Coordinator)
  • Kerstin Sander, University College London, United Kingdom
  • Heiko Herwald, Lund University, Sweden
  • Eugen Proschak, Goethe University, Germany