The emergence of multidrug-resistant bacteria constitutes a great challenge for modern medicine, recognized by leading medical experts and politicians worldwide. Rediscovery and implementation of bacteriophage therapy by Western medicine might be one solution to the problem of increasing antibiotic failure. In some Eastern European countries phage therapy is used for treating infectious diseases. However, while the European Medicines Agency (EMA) advised that the development of bacteriophage-based therapies should be expedited due to its significant potential, EMA emphasized that phages cannot be recommended for approval before efficacy and safety have been proven by appropriately designed preclinical and clinical trials. More evidence-based data is required, particularly in the areas of pharmacokinetics, repeat applications, immunological reactions to the application of phages as well as the interactions and effects on bacterial biofilms and organ-specific environments. In this brief review we summarize advantages and disadvantages of phage therapy and discuss challenges to the establishment of phage therapy as approved treatment for multidrug-resistant bacteria.
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