Searching for More Effective Tuberculosis Drugs

Posted on February 1, 2009  Comments (1)

In India: A Search for More Effective Tuberculosis Drugs

The multi-drug regimen is a major problem for several reasons. It requires TB patients to manage taking four drugs exactly as prescribed over six to nine months. If patients don’t take the full course of the medicines, the TB bacteria may develop resistance to the drugs and become even more difficult to treat. To reduce that risk, many countries require that patients go to a clinic so a healthcare professional can watch them take the medication and ensure they are complying with their drug-treatment regimen. This is both expensive and time consuming. Gokhale said that a single drug that targets multiple pathways could save time and money by eliminating the need to take so many drugs over such a long period of time.

To create their new compound, Gokhale and his colleagues exploited an evolutionary quirk in the way Mycobacterium tuberculosis builds the lipid layer that coats its surface. Unlike other organisms, M. tuberculosis displays a suite of complex lipids on its outer membrane. Some scientists have suggested that these long lipid molecules contribute to the bacteria’s ability to maintain long-term infections by confusing the host’s immune system.

Related: Fighting TuberculosisTB Pandemic ThreatExtensively Drug-resistant Tuberculosis (XDR TB)Virtually untreatable TB found

One Response to “Searching for More Effective Tuberculosis Drugs”

  1. Anonymous
    February 2nd, 2009 @ 8:25 am

    The problem of tuberculosis is one of the biggest problem in our country. I leave in Russia – Vladivostok. And i should say that we have something like 5 persent of people who have this trouble. I am working in a company that helps this people and we are doing everything to make them feel more better.

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