Washington • The Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved a new antibiotic from Cubist Pharmaceuticals to treat common skin infections often acquired in the hospital.
Regulators cleared the company's Sivextro as a pill and as an intravenous solution for adults with skin infections caused by bacteria that are often resistant to older antibiotics.
It's the second FDA approval in less than a month for a new antibiotic to treat such infections. In late May, the FDA approved a similar drug from Durata Therapeutics Inc.
Antibiotics like penicillin and streptomycin first became widely available in the 1940s, and today dozens are still used to kill or suppress the bacteria behind illnesses ranging from strep throat to urinary-tract infections. The drugs are considered one of the greatest advances in the history of medicine, and have saved countless lives.