SciDev.Net examines tuberculosis (TB) in India, which has the world’s highest TB burden, and some experts’ hopes that researchers in the country can develop accurate and affordable diagnostic test kits. “The recognition that no new anti-TB vaccine is expected before 2015 has prompted experts to pin their hopes on improving diagnosis,” the news service writes. “One cause for worry in India is a plateau in the number of new cases being detected at 87 percent of actual infections, over the past five years,” and another is the “slow rate of decline of the disease in India,” SciDev.Net notes, adding, “Despite the drawbacks, global experts at [a recent TB] conference were optimistic that Indian diagnostic companies would soon form a world hub for high-quality generic diagnostics” (Padma, 11/3).
PlusNews Reports On Importance Of Cost-Effectiveness Of ZAMSTAR Study For Policymakers, Donors Amid Economic Downturn
PlusNews reports on the results of the Zambia-South Africa TB and AIDS Reduction (ZAMSTAR) study released on Monday at the International Lung Health Conference in Lille, France, which show that “[h]ome-based tuberculosis (TB) education and testing reduced community TB prevalence by about 20 percent.” Noting that “the trial cost US$27 million [and] the interventions it piloted cost about $0.80 per patient,” the news service writes that while “the cost-effectiveness of household outreach has not yet been calculated, … [t]his will be of particular interest not only to national policymakers but also donors, who continue to tighten purse strings amid a global economic downturn” (11/1).
This post in the Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks” blog reports the results of a Zambia-South Africa TB and AIDS Reduction (ZAMSTAR) program study, released Monday, which “demonstrate that household counseling — defined as the unpacking of concerns about TB and HIV within households and facilitating prompt diagnosis and treatment…
This post in the Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks” blog reports on a presentation at the Union World Conference on Lung Health in France on Saturday by Evelyne Kibuchi, a senior tuberculosis (TB) advocacy officer at the Kenya AIDS NGOs Consortium (KANCO), writing, “HIV stakeholders have been slow to…
At the recent International Lung Health Conference in Lille, France, IRIN/PlusNews spoke with Stop TB Director Mario Raviglione about the threat of drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB), its treatment and “the precarious TB funding gap,” the news service writes. In the interview, Raviglione discusses the Directly Observed Treatment Short course (DOTS) approach to TB treatment, the issue of second-line TB drugs, and the future of TB funding, among other issues (10/31).
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and China’s Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) on Wednesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding to form a partnership to support new research and development (R&D) and production of new products for global health and agriculture, Agence France-Presse reports (10/26).
“The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) launched a consortium on Wednesday that would allow the public and private sector to share intellectual property to promote the development of new drugs to treat diseases such as malaria,” Reuters reports (10/26). “Under the agreement between [WIPO], … the companies and the non-profit BIO Ventures for Global Health (BVGH), public and private sector organizations will share valuable intellectual property (IP) and expertise with the global health research community on WIPO Re:Search, a virtual platform,” the U.N. News Centre writes (10/26).
Pharmaceutical firm Eli Lilly and Co. is expected to announce on Tuesday it “is pledging $30 million to help fight multidrug-resistant tuberculosis [MDR-TB] in developing countries, a disease that kills more than 150,000 people a year,” according to the Indianapolis Star. The funds, part of the company’s eight-year-old, $165 million Lilly MDR-TB Partnership, will help to “provide training for nurses, doctors and community volunteers; conduct studies on how to combat the disease; and provide access to medicines,” the newspaper notes. The campaign will focus on China, India, Russia and South Africa, “the four countries with the highest burden of MDR-TB, Lilly said,” the Indianapolis Star writes (10/25).
An electronic voucher system, introduced by the World Food Programme (WFP) and implemented by the health ministry and non-governmental organizations, is helping Zimbabweans living with HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis (TB) and their families obtain food and fight malnutrition, PlusNews reports. “The program supports about 5,000 patients and their families with essential food items and is operating at seven health facilities in the capital [Harare] and has been extended to the second-largest city, Bulawayo,” the news service writes.
A Lancet editorial responds to the WHO’s sixteenth annual report on global tuberculosis (TB) control, released on Oct 11, which shows that the incidence of tuberculosis has been falling worldwide since 2002, writing, “Successes in disease control in China and other countries show what sustained political and economic support can achieve. Rather than waiting for the elixir of economic success to arrive in all high-burden countries, committed action by donors, agencies, and governments in the most challenging settings is needed in the global campaign against tuberculosis.”