Brief news reports on Tuberculosis

Risk factors for development of TB after starting HIV therapy identified in North American research

The development of tuberculosis (TB) after the initiation of antiretroviral therapy is associated with a low CD4 cell count, injecting drug use, and non-white race, investigators from the US and Canada report in the September 15th edition of the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

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First draft of the National Strategic Plan for HIV and AIDS, STIs and TB launched by the South African National AIDS Council

A controversial plan to circumcise newborn babies is among a string of drastic new proposals to tackle the scourge of HIV.

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PEPFAR 2012 Country Operational Guidance includes special section on HIV/TB

Part of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program’s recently released 2012 Country Operational Plan Guidance, the TB/HIV Technical Considerations highlight the important role of tuberculosis prevention and treatment in successfully combating the HIV pandemic. The updated “considerations” take into account the 2011 World Health Organization (WHO) “Guidelines for intensified tuberculosis case-finding and isoniazid preventive therapy for people living with HIV in resource-constrained settings,” as well as guidance released by the U.S. government on rollout of the GeneXpert rapid TB diagnostic.

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Germany to provide funds to Tajikistan to combat tuberculosis

German government-owned development bank, Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW), will provide 6.9 million euros to Tajikistan for implementation of the fourth phase of the tuberculosis prevention project, the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade (MEDT) of Tajikistan said, Asia-Plus reported.

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TB urine test developed by Indian researchers offers quicker, less invasive diagnosis

"The Delhi-based International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) and the Lala Ram Sarup Institute of Tuberculosis and Respiratory Diseases, collaborated with the National University of Singapore to develop" a urine test that "offers a less invasive diagnostic method for" tuberculosis (TB), SciDev reports. "Drug-resistant cases need an expensive, sophisticated test that takes two weeks of culturing blood samples to detect the bacterium," but developing countries, which "account for 95 percent of new infections and 98 percent of deaths ... prefer a simple test requiring minimum resources and trained personnel, and one that gives quick and easily interpreted results, the Delhi scientists observed," according to the news agency (Padma, 8/23).

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PEPFAR releases 2012 Country Operational Plan Guidance

PEPFAR recently released its 2012 Country Operational Plan Guidance, "which highlights seven program priorities: increasing prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) coverage and effectiveness; improving and refining the country's approach to treatment; programming for prevention impact; TB/HIV integration; testing and counseling; training new health care providers; and capacity building," according to the Center for Global Health Policy's "Science Speaks" blog (Mazzotta, 8/22).

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Kenya: Cases of MDRTB to rise because patients are defaulting drugs

The ministry of health has raised fears that the number of patients suffering from drug resistant TB could rise considerably because TB patients are not taking their medication.

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Prior parasitic worm infections may complicate TB therapy

Tuberculosis (TB) is a major threat to global health, taking the lives of more than a million people worldwide each year. Its greatest impact is often in the most impoverished places on earth, where patients frequently suffer from multiple chronic illnesses at the same time. In such situations, the question of whether each individual illness might make concurrent illnesses more difficult to treat becomes a critical issue both for specific patients and for general public health. New research led by Padmini Salgame, Ph.D., professor and director of the Graduate Medical Research Program at the University of Medicine and Dentistry (UMDNJ)-New Jersey Medical School, has established such a connection between tuberculosis and infection by parasitic worms, a frequent occurrence in much of the world. The study, by a team that also worked in collaboration with William C. Gause, Ph.D., professor and senior associate dean of research at New Jersey Medical School, appears in the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

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Inexpensive microcalorimeters can quickly detect TB

Researchers have discovered a faster, cheaper method for the diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB). A major barrier in TB prevention, especially in developing countries, is that diagnosis is slow and costly. Dr Olivier Braissant and his colleagues have developed a method which could potentially decrease the time taken to make a diagnosis. Their method is also cheaper than the current fastest methods. This research has been published today in the Society for Applied Microbiology's Journal of Applied Microbiology.

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SOUTH AFRICA: Lihle Dlamini, “People who have TB still face the same challenges I faced in 2002“

JOHANNESBURG, 16 August 2011 (PlusNews) - Lihle Dlamini is the deputy general-secretary of South Africa’s AIDS lobby group, the Treatment Action Campaign. As the country moves to include a strong emphasis on tuberculosis (TB) for the first time in its latest national strategic plan on HIV, Dlamini recounted her experience with TB treatment almost 10 years ago:

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