STD Awareness Week 2021: Gonorrhoea strikes back

11 Apr 2021

On STD Awareness Week (11-17 April), we’re calling attention to a hard truth. After years of decline in many regions of the world, the most common sexually transmitted infections (STIs, also known as sexually transmitted diseases or STDs) – chlamydia, syphilis and gonorrhoea – are staging a comeback. Of these infections, GARDP is currently working to address gonorrhoea.

Every hour across the world there are almost 10,000 new gonorrhoea infections. This amounts to 87 million new infections every year. Untreated gonorrhoea can have serious and permanent consequences, including infertility in men and women, pelvic inflammatory disease and life-threatening ectopic pregnancy.

The gonorrhoea bacteria can evolve to defeat the drugs designed to kill it. This process has been accelerated by the inappropriate use of antibiotics. Drug-resistant gonorrhoea has been reported in every region of the world and is identified by the World Health Organization as a priority infection urgently requiring new antibiotics. To address the need for effective drugs, GARDP is developing a new treatment for gonorrhoea and is working to ensure it is available to everyone who needs it, wherever they live.

With our partner Entasis Therapeutics, we are evaluating a novel antibiotic called zoliflodacin. As a first-in-class treatment, zoliflodacin is active against resistant strains of gonorrhoea. Following positive phase 2 results, a global phase 3 trial of the treatment is underway in the United States, Netherlands, South Africa and Thailand.

On the trail of a new gonorrhoea treatment

Photo gallery: In Thailand, investigating a lifechanging gonorrhoea treatment

Discover a photo story exploring the importance of the activation of our zoliflodacin trial in Thailand. View photo story.

About GARDP’s sexually-transmitted infections programme


Learn more about GARDP’s STI programme:

Sexually-transmitted infections

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