Discover Phage Therapy

Welcome to the new frontier in the fight against bacterial disease - a frontier defined by technology that is nearly one century old, but which remains new to western science. "Phage therapy" - a technology that employs "good viruses" called bacteriophages (commonly known as "phages") to destroy infection-causing bacteria, has been used safely and successfully for more than ninety years to treat and prevent a wide array of illnesses in the former Soviet Union. Capable of application in liquid, tablet, or powder form, phages obliterate the specific bacterial strains nature designed them to attack, while remaining harmless to the surrounding environment.

How Phages Destroy Bacteria

The Georgian Legacy

Uses and Applications

Phage Therapy Safety

A Winning Vision

Georgia First

Overcoming Regulatory Obstacles

Successful Testing

Online Sales

Today, a century after their discovery, phages are poised to fulfill their early promise and make a significant contribution to the treatment of bacterial disease.

Professor Eric Keen (University of Miami), "A century of phage research: Bacteriophages and the shaping of modern biology."Bioessays, 37: 6-9. 2014. Web.

Someone who is about to die of a MRSA infection could be given an injection with a phage cocktail that could be a lifesaver . . . It is within the power of the medical community to do this. If there was enough of a public ground-swell, the FDA could convene a panel and come up with a way to treat phages differently from new chemical drugs.

Professor Ryland Young (Texas A& M University), as quoted in "A Cure Exists For Antibiotic-Resistant Infections. So Why Are Thousands Of Americans Still Dying?"Prevention, January 12, 2015. Web.

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Name and Address

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Advanced Biophage Technologies International, LLC
3 Gotua Street, 380060
Tbilisi, Georgia

To send a direct email in lieu of using our form: info@advancedbiophagetechnologies.com

About ABT International

Advanced Biophage Technologies International, LLC (ABTI) is a company based in the Republic of Georgia which is dedicated to the global commercialization of phage therapy. Unlike many entities which have sought to move the phage therapy industry's assets and intellectual property to the West, ABT International believes that the future success of phage therapy is inseparable from the expertise and know-how of the Georgian scientists who have perfected it over the course of nearly one century.

We seek to lead a united effort involving Georgia's top producers of commercial phage therapy products to share our national treasure with the world through education, promotion, and sales of the existing products which Georgians currently buy "over-the-counter," and through carefully selected projects in health care, agriculture, and veterinary medicine which can deliver measurable results demonstrating the power, versatility, and cost-effectiveness of phage therapy.

During the coming months, we plan to launch the first online store for commercial phage therapy, which will feature outstanding products which are already available for "over the counter" sale in Georgia.

Leadership

William B. McCall

William B. McCall

Chairman

A co-founder of ABTI, William B. McCall possesses more than two decades' experience in the financial and investment fields, together with international marketing, management, and business experience with three large multinational corporations.

Mr. McCall earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Foreign Service (International Economics) from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. He received a Master of Business Administration Degree (MBA-Finance and Management) from Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia.

Other experiences include military service as a United States Army Ordnance Officer-Vietnam Era, and Adjunct University Faculty Teaching of graduate and undergraduate courses in Investments, Portfolio Management, Accounting for Control, and Managerial Economics.

Dr. Nino Revishvili

Dr. Nino Revishvili

Director General

As a physician with practice experience in neurology and pediatrics, Dr. Nino Revishvili has compiled a diverse professional portfolio which encompasses significant administrative experience in the health care and international relations fields. As Counterpart International's Medical Coordinator for the Caucasus Region, she coordinated the establishment of primary health care clinics in Georgia and Armenia while administering humanitarian aid programs throughout that region. She subsequently managed licensing and compliance functions for the Genesis Association-Clinics, serving as that organization's primary liaison with Georgia's Ministry of Health.

Dr. Revishvili has further managed procurement for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe's Mission to Georgia, and has served in an administrative capacity for the United States Embassy in Tbilisi, Georgia. In 2010, she joined BiopharmL, LLC as a purchasing, licensing, and regulatory compliance consultant.

David L. Host

David L. Host

Chief Information Officer

David L. Host possesses a broad professional background which encompasses government communications, technology consulting and more than five years in the private practice of law.

Mr. Host served as Communications Director for the Florida Department of State in the immediate aftermath of the 2000 U.S. presidential election recount, and has also managed media relations for four members of the United States House of Representatives: U.S. Rep. Larry J. Hopkins (6th District, KY), U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris (13th District, FL), U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce (2nd District, NM), and U.S. Rep. Andy Barr (6th District, KY).

In his capacity as ABTI's Chief Information Officer, Mr. Host is responsible for ABTI's media relations, outreach programs, internal communications coordination, and web development.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are phages, and why haven't I heard of them before?

A "phage" - short for "bacteriophage" - is a virus that only destroys bacteria. Scientific estimates have suggested that phages constitute the most plentiful life-like substance on earth, and that they eradicate half of the world's bacteria every day. Phages naturally exist in all places where one finds bacteria, including the human body.

French-Canadian scientist Felix d'Herelle first identified phages one century ago. He soon found that phages could treat and even prevent bacterial disease in human beings - and he successfully used phages to cure cholera and plague in India and Egypt, respectively, during the 1920s. Soon, pharmaceutical companies like Eli Lilly were marketing phage therapy in the United States and elsewhere. Regrettably, the hype quickly outstripped the science - and aside from d'Herelle and other experts, few truly understood how to produce efficacious phage medicines. As improperly prepared phage treatments failed, phage therapy lost vital credibility - and when penicillin appeared on the scene, Western doctors and scientists abandoned phage therapy altogether.

Meanwhile, the Soviet Union could not afford penicillin and other antibiotics - and when d'Herelle visited fellow phage discoverer Georges Eliava in the Soviet Republic of Georgia, Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin seized upon the opportunity. D'Herelle reportedly fled the Soviet Union when Eliava was executed as an "enemy of the people" at the behest of Stalin secret police chief Lavrentiy Beria - but phage research continued in earnest at the institute in Tbilisi which today bears Eliava's name. Soviet troops relied on phages to treat and prevent infection during World War II - and by the 1980s, the Eliava Institute reportedly manufactured tons of phage products per week. Financial support from Moscow ended with Georgian independence in 1991 - but a determined and resourceful group of Georgian scientists braved civil war and economic deprivation to preserve a half-century of incomparable research and experience in phage technology. Over the next 20 years, a small but vibrant commercial phage industry emerged. Today, it is possible to walk into most Georgian pharmacies and find at least two different brands of phage therapy products which treat strep throat, staph infections, dysentery, and several other common bacterially-induced ailments. Most significant for Western nations, these products can successfully address MRSA and other deadly antibiotic-resistant "superbugs."

Why turn to a therapy that predates antibiotics, when antibiotics have been so successful?

Without question, antibiotics have earned their reputation as modern medicine's "magic bullet." Yet, throughout most of the world, antibiotic treatment of bacterial infections has become both a blessing and a curse. The "broad spectrum" action of antibiotics causes them to eliminate the "good" bacteria which help us fight infection along with the dangerous pathogens which threaten our health. In the short term, many people suffer debilitating side effects. Over time, the most virulent pathogens find a way to adapt, survive, and thrive; evolving resistance to the chemical poisons antibiotics use to kill them. Such "antibiotic resistant" bacteria ultimately win nature's "survival of the fittest" contest; becoming dominant and seemingly indestructible - hence the moniker "Superbug."

Western media reports cite "abuse" and "overuse" of antibiotics as the source of the emerging crisis of antibiotic resistance. This analysis is mostly correct - but arguably, we have always been living on "borrowed time" with antibiotics. Throughout human history, nature has demonstrated its relentless capacity to defeat our "best laid plans" - and the notion that static chemical compounds which take a decade or more to research, develop, and test could keep pace with perpetually changing living organisms now seems fantastical at best. Thankfully, phage therapy not only offers a viable alternative to antibiotics; it provides a safer and more durable solution, as well. Phages are "strain-specific;" meaning that they do not kill the "good" bacteria which help us digest food and ward off disease. As a result, phage therapy has manifested no major side effects during almost one century of use in Georgia and the other republics of the former Soviet Union.

Most important, phages evolve in concert with the bacteria nature specially designed them to eradicate; rendering bacterial resistance to phages a theoretical - but not real - concern. Perhaps the best way to characterize the developments in microbiology and medicine over the last century is to suggest that antibiotics provided us with essential "breathing space" while we learned how to implement a more challenging - but eventually more effective and more permanent - solution in phage therapy.

Why don't we just develop "new and better" antibiotics?

"New and better" antibiotics do not constitute a realistic alternative for both economic and practical reasons. Companies investing in the research and development of new antibiotics will likely never recover their investment, as the economic life of a new antibiotic will likely be short; primarily due to the rapid emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria. This economic calculus suggests why major pharmaceutical companies are not focusing their energy and resources on antibiotic research and development. Notwithstanding the size of the potential market, the costs far outweigh the potential rewards.

Are phages natural or synthetic?

Phages are entirely natural. As the most abundant form of life on our planet, phages constitute an essential and innate mechanism through which nature controls the growth of bacteria. Each milliliter of ocean water may contain more than 10 million phages, and phages are naturally present in everything we eat and drink. Our bodies even host a wide variety of phages in our oral cavity and digestive system.

What about genetically-modified phages?

ABTI does not market or promote phages that have been genetically modified in any way. While several efforts to produce GMO phages are currently underway in the Western scientific community, ABTI is not engaged in any of these efforts, as we have yet to see any data that suggests that such an approach can improve upon the proven natural phage therapy protocols which Georgian scientists have mastered and applied with substantial success over more than ninety years.

Is phage therapy effective as preventative medicine?

Yes. Phages can destroy potentially dangerous bacterial pathogens before they cause disease.

What are we waiting for? Why wasn't phage therapy available in my pharmacy yesterday?

The answer to this question is multifaceted, but ultimately very simple. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other Western regulatory agencies expect proof of phage therapy's efficacy which matches Western scientific standards. These standards are premised a) upon laboratory facilities and a general level of economic development which Georgia cannot yet meet; and b) regimented testing requirements designed for static chemical compounds like antibiotics. This characteristic of antibiotics constitutes a major source of the antibiotic resistance crisis (by contrast, phages evolve in concert with antibiotics - meaning that bacteria have a much harder time developing resistance to phages), and one would expect regulatory agencies like the FDA to adjust their regulatory approach accordingly. Indeed, they have done so when the need was clearly apparent to them (as in the case of the flu vaccine, the components of which change regularly). In the instance of phage therapy, however, the FDA and other regulatory authorities take their cues from the Western scientific community, much of which remains skeptical regarding phage therapy's efficacy.

Some progress has occurred during the last decade. For example, the FDA approved a phage therapy product for use in food preparation, labeling it "Generally Regarded as Safe." A sustained, determined advocacy effort is necessary, however, to generate a groundswell of public opinion in favor of phage therapy. That popular support, in turn, will create the political pressure necessary to produce regulatory reform.

Are U.S. organizations involved in the development and commercialization of phage technology?

Yes. The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) and many university researchers are following developments in phage technology very closely. Many concerns have embarked upon efforts to discover commercial applications, either by themselves or as part of international concerns.