Ahmedabad: Cadila Pharmaceuticals Ltd and Helperby Therapeutics, a UK-based company, have signed an agreement to conduct research and development to treat infections caused by microrganisms that are resistant to antibiotics.

The tie-up, formalised during British Prime Minister David Cameron’s one-day visit to India on Thursday, will focus on the discovery of patented ‘resistance breaker’ compounds, the Ahmedabad-based Cadila said in a release on Thursday.

These new compounds are called antibiotic resistance breakers. When an antibiotic resistance breaker is combined with an old and obsolete antibiotic, it can rejuvenate it and make it active against highly resistant bacteria.

Helperby will supply Cadila with antibiotic resistance breakers while Cadila will develop the combinations with old antibiotics. The deal value was not disclosed.

“Today’s deal between Helperby and Cadila Pharmaceuticals on antibiotic resistance research is another great example of UK-India collaboration helping both our countries to succeed in the global race," Cameron said in the media statement issued by Cadila.

“And it’s not just a step forward for medical research it also has the potential to create up to 1,000 highly skilled jobs in the UK by 2019."

Rajiv Modi, chairman and managing director of Cadila Pharma, said the discovery will open new avenues against resistant organisms and is timely in view of global concerns about rapidly growing bacterial resistance against current antibiotics.