Research, Antimicrobial Resistance

Ozenoxacin is a New and Potent Antimicrobial Agent Against Skin Infections

ISGlobal collaborates with Ferrer laboratories to evaluate the antibacterial activity of the new drug

Photo: Janice Haney Carr

 A new molecule developed by Ferrer laboratories has a potent bactericidal activity against pathogens associated to skin infections, according to a microbiological study performed in collaboration with ISGlobal, an institution supported by “la Caixa” Foundation.   

Ozenoxacin, developed by the Spanish laboratory Ferrer, belongs to the new generation of nonfluorinated quinolones. Its potent bactericidal activity (i.e. it kills bacteria) indicates that it could be used against a wide variety of pathogenic bacteria. In fact, a first series of clinical trials has shown that an ozenoxacin-based cream is effective in treating impetigo, a frequent skin infection, particularly in children, caused by Staphylococcus aureus or Streptococcus pyogenes bacteria.

In this study, ISGlobal researchers collaborated with Ferrer to evaluate in vitro (i.e. in the laboratory) the activity of ozenoxacin against a variety of pathogens associated to skin infections, in parallel with a dozen of other antimicrobial agents. To do so, they used bacterial isolates obtained from skin infections of patients from 49 centres in Spain, The Netherlands, Germany, Romania, South Africa and USA (almost 1,100 isolates). They also measured the activity of the different drugs against more than 1,000 Staphylococcus isolates obtained from the clinics. 

Ozenoxacin proved to be the most potent agent against all staphylococci isolates – including those resistant to methicillin – and was also highly active against streptococci (mainly Streptococcus pyogenes and Streptococcus agalactiae). “Our study indicates the ozenoxacin is a new and potent antimicrobial agent against the most common pathogens associated with skin infections,” comments Yuly López, postdoc researcher at ISGlobal and study co-author. “The emergence of bacteria resistant to the standard treatments underlines the need to find alternative, safe and effective agents. These results support the use of ozenoxacin in impetigo treatment,” says Jordi Vila, director of the Antimicrobial Resistance Initiative at ISGlobal and coauthor of the study.  


Canton R, Morrissey I, Vila J et al. Comparative in vitro antibacterial activity of ozenoxacin against Gram-positive clinical isolates. Future Microbiol. 2018 May 1;13:3-19. doi: 10.2217/fmb-2017-0289.